A good friend of mine got the call that she has dysplasia and needs to go in for a colposcopy. After that test they called to say she needs to go in for a LEEP as it's moderate to severe. Not once did her doctor mention HPV. In fact she didn't know anything about it until I told her. After she called the office they said yes in fact it was caused by HPV.
Does that make sense? Is there any reason a doctor wouldn't mention the cause and that she could pass it on?
I don't think either my family doctor OR my original gynecologist told me the cause was hpv. My family doctor said the abnormal pap was likely "inflammation" from my previous close pregnancies. The gynecologist only said "you get this from having sex" but added no specifics.
As soon as I got the call that I'd had an abnormal pap though, I started doing some research and found out on my own that it was caused by hpv.
How old is your friend? Is she in a committed relationship? You have to wonder if docs are sometimes hesitant to tell women about this because it is considered an std. Not saying it's right - heaven knows, full disclosure is what is needed. If the docs would take the time to sit down with their patients and EXPLAIN to them about hpv it would be so much better. Like, tell your patient that it is a very common virus. Tell your patient that you can carry the virus and not know it until you have an abnormal pap. Tell your patient that it is rare for the cell changes to progress to cancer when they are caught early enough. But no, that would take up more than the 5 minutes they allocate for each appointment!
what really bothered me was that my doctor freaked me out too much! When the nurse called to state i needed to come in for a colposcopy, I asked to speak with the doctor about what was going on. first of all, she acted like I was asking for the world from her, but eventually i pushed and got to speak with him. well he advised me that i have hpv (ok, fine..a little freaked out, but ok), and i needed to come in immediately for a colposcopy (ok, a little more freaked out by the word "immediately") and that i have mild to moderate dysplasia (at that time i didn't know what it was and was friegtened by the scary medical words) and that it could lead to cancer if not treated (cancer...cancer? you mean i could have cancer??!! completely freaked out!) - so like at this point, my heart is racing, i am sweating and on the verge of tears and the doctor asks if i have any questions. QUESTIONS??? I can't even freaking speak!
i understand that drs are busy people. i get that. but i work in law and i have to take the time to explain legal things to people all day and listen to them freak out about it and try and help them. i just think that if they are going to drop these bombshells on you they need to take the time to explain everything to you - like the medical terms and be more reassuring. not just "you have this, you might have this too, this is what needs to be done. any questions?". I'm not asking for hand holding, just a little compassion and time.
Also, do they have to call you on a friday and completely ruin your entire weekend?
I understand why you would be upset. A few years ago I started having abnormal periods. I was never once told why, only that I needed to show up for colposcopys. I had two colposcopys before I was told I had HPV. Needless to say I was shocked, I had never heard of it before. I had just met my husband a few months ago and I was terrified to tell him for thinking he would leave. Of course he was wonderful and the doctor that performed my 2nd colposcopy was so kind and explained everything to me. She could not understand why my regular doctor had not said anything. Of course this was before HPV was really spoken about in the late 90's. I am so glad they are speaking about it more.
The doctor should be advising when this occurs, I do not know why they are not. I would ask them.
I dont' know, it was the first frickin' thing they told me, right after the whole abnormal cells/dysplasia thing. My friend is 27, not currently in a committed relationship but just got out of one. I was honestly irate no one mentioned anything to her. Isn't it enough that we don't hear about this before we get it? Shouldn't we at least be informed once we're forced to live with it?
I admit though she's handling it much better than I did. I went into a huge funk; just did not deal well at all. She has much more of a life goes on attitude.