Dr Oz: HPV FAQs
Women have spoken up to Dr Oz with their questions and personal experiences surrounding HPV and cancer. It could turn up during a routine pap smear, or you could go decades without knowing you have it. Dr Oz tackled some of the most common questions and fears surrounding HPV.
Who Did I Get HPV From?
This is one of the most common questions: where did I get HPV? Especially if you have been in a long term, monogamous relationship, you may be wondering how you contracted it. Dr Jennifer Ashton said that you have to uncouple the medical and social aspects of HPV.
Doctors can’t definitively say where you got HPV, or when. Most men won’t have any symptoms of HPV infection, and women often don’t know for years that they have it. Women may wonder if their husbands are having affairs. Dr Ashton said that’s probably not usually the case. There’s still a lot doctors don’t know about what causes HPV to lie dormant and then reactivate.
What Should I Do If I Have HPV?
Don’t panic. That’s the #1 takeaway from this discussion. Dr Diane Harper said patients with HPV simply need to be aware that they could be at risk for developing other types of cancer. There are 8 Cancers Caused by HPV.
Dr Harper recommended maintaining a relationship with your doctor and showing up for regular tests and screenings. She said 90% of HPV infections will clear up on their own, without developing. In about 5% of cases, pre-cancer symptoms will develop, but they are curable.
Dr Oz: How To Get Rid of HPV
How can you encourage your body to get rid of HPV on its own, without turning to those pre-cancerous symptoms? A strong immune system is key, and Dr Jennifer Ashton said that keeping yourself healthy will encourage the body to repel an HPV infection on its own.
Dr Oz: Cervical Cancer Prevention
Smoking is bad for your Cervix and the rest of your body, so Dr Ashton said you should give up cigarettes to give yourself a best shot. Quitting “smoking is probably the single most important thing you can do to prevent that HPV to go on to Cervical Cancer,” she said.
Dr Oz had some advice as well. He suggested taking B vitamins such as Folic Acids and recommend a diet with Lycopene Rich Foods.
Dr Oz: Can a Man Be Tested for HPV?
Another woman in the audience was diagnosed with HPV at age 18. Now that she has two sons entering college, she wondered whether men can be tested as well. Dr Harper said there is no current method for testing men for HPV. It’s not easily detectable right now, though testing methods are being researched.