Post # 1
I am going through a miscarriage right now, and one of the things the state requires OB’s to do to pregnant women is a pap test.
I got called today from the doctor’s office confirming that I am indeed miscarrying (thanks, but I figured that out a week ago) and also giving me the results of my pap. Abnormal. ASCUS level, and turns out I am also HPV+.
I waited for my wedding (which was three months ago) to ever have any kind of sex. My husband had a couple of partners before me and apparently he picked it up from them.
I didn’t get the Gardasil vaccine when it came out because by the time I really thought about it I was 26 and my insurance was going to quit covering it. So I just never brought it up. I also felt somewhat immune, because after all I just was going to have one sex partner and that really lowered my risk level right? Dumbass move on my part. If I am ever blessed with daughters you can bet I will be having them pumped with vaccine as soon as they menstruate.
I’m very scared, even though it was apparently the lowest level of abnormal cells you can have. In addition to which we are TTC and I am just… I don’t know. On google I read the suggestion to start wearing condoms to prevent reinfection. Condoms are not only NOT our thing, they also are not conducive to baby-making. But I really want this to go away and not turn into something horrible, which after my experience with losing the pregnancy, I feel like everything is going to turn bad on me.
Does anyone have any experience with this. When I googled I read all about the stories of women who started off with ASCUS and wound up with hysterectomies and Stage II etc.
Post # 3
HPV is very common, and if you contracted it 3 months ago you have luckily detected it very early, though it’s no fun. The real problems that stem from HPV is when it goes untreated for a long time, which can lead to genital warts and even cancer. So while not directly linked to infertility, it can cause problems which affect your overall health if you’re TTC.
I know someone who has had it, it actually ended up going away on it’s own. I don’t believe there is a cure but there are treatment options for sure. What has your doctor recommended?
Post # 4
I’m sorry you are going through this, it must have been quite a shock. I found out I was HPV+ a few months after I started dating SO and I have no idea if it came from me or from him and that was upsetting enough.
What they did for me is they did a biopsy (not comfortable at all but it’s not as scary and bad as it all sounded) and it came back negative for cancerous cells. If that had come back positive they would have a few options of how to remove the cells- either freeze them off or cut the top layer of the cervix off. THAT part was what scared me so much because children is the most important thing i look forward to in life- they reassured me that it wouldn’t cause infertility issues.
Now I do panic everytime I go into the OBGYN, but other than that I try to keep the stress about it low so that it isn’t more likely to act up.
That’s just my story- you are not alone
Post # 5
@KatyElle: I kinda tuned the nurse out after she said it because I was interiorly freaking out, but she said the doctor is probably going to call me and set up an appointment to do the pap again in 6 months or so. I guess that is all they can do for now, just watch it. Until it goes away or gets worse. I understand why they can’t “cut it out” because there’s nothing there for them to get but at the same time I feel like I am walking around with a time bomb in me. I am going to call back tomorrow and ask if they know what type of HPV it was, apparently there is high risk and low risk HPV.
Post # 6
@Magdalena: Yes, definitely have a sit down with your doctor. I’m guessing if they said 6 months to check back you aren’t in the red zone, but you want to be proactive about your treatment, I know I always feel better when I’m following steps A,B and C rather than just waiting around.
Post # 7
Just stay on top of it. Let your doctor know if you have any changing symptoms, etc. It’s better to know now, as much as it sucks. I’m so sorry.
Post # 8
@Magdalena: I am sorry that you are going through this. When I was 19 I was told that I had an abnormal pap. I had a biopsy and everything came back ok(non cancerious cells). however, they still froze the cells on my cervix. I was assured that this would not affect my chances of having kids. I was never told that I had HPV and still dont know to this day. I was very young and very confused and it was not explained to me. I was honestly very scared. I read abunch of scarey stuff online about it and was so scared I had cancer. I suggest not looking into this stuff online. Its usually extrem cases and untrue stories.
my current Dr says that I probably did have HPV. She said that HPV is like a cold for your genitles. She said it is extremly common and usually does not cause any issues. She said its very important to get yearly paps though. This was 7 years ago and I have not had any problems since (knock on wood). however, I still freak out when I get a pap.
Post # 9
Don’t be scared – HPV is by FAR the most common STD and many women (and men) have it and get rid of it on their own without even knowing! Now that you are aware, your doctor will probably want to monitor you every 6 months instead of just yearly. By the next time you go, it may even be gone! If not, they might do a “leep” procedure and/or a colposcopy.
It is highly treatable as long as you stay on top of it – don’t worry!!!
Post # 10
@Magdalena: Oh, sweetie, I am so sorry. What a beyond cruddy week you are having! NOT FAIR!
I had an abnormal pap and + hpv test about 5 years ago. Apparently, I was positive for the cancer causing strains, too 🙁 I found this out on a Monday, after having a pap done the week before, and sleeping with my now husband for the first time the Saturday before I found out… I’m ashamed to say that I did not tell him when I found out (since it was not him who infected me, but who I likely exposed)… I hadn’t been dating him very long and was scared he’d freak and leave and I was crazy about him… anyhow… I still have never told him. I feel terrible about that and hope it never bites me/us is the ass. My gyn had the bedside manner of a rock and failed to explain what the results meant and just scheduled me for a colposcopy (sp?) and biopsy. Those results came back ok. I had paps ever 6 months for 2 years and they were all fine. I went to every year after that and they’ve been fine. I’ve read that your body can fight off the infection on it’s own, so I’m sort of assuming/hoping that has happened with me. I’m finally going to a new gyn next week and I plan to ask her about this…
Anyway, I hope you are able to get more info. soon and hope the condoms won’t be necessary, given that you want to conceive soon. I am so sorry about the MC. As you know having one, especially with your first PG, is pretty common… not an indication that things will always turn out crappy for you (though I can understand that feeling).
(I am a regular poster but am using an anon account since I’d prefer not to have details of my medical history linked to my photos, etc.!)
Post # 11
I had 2 abnormal pap tests, was HPV+ (even after gaurdasil) and ended up having the abnormal cells removed because they came back aggressive on the 2nd pap. Everything is normal now, I am not HPV+ now and I will be able to have kids because of the kind of surgery they did (not very invasive). Most women will be HPV+ at some point in their life, most clear up on their own. If your doctor caught it early, there is nothing to worry about. Just keep getting re-pap’s every 6 months and keep a close eye on it so steps can be taken if it does get worse. Good luck!
Post # 12
One of my best friends is also my Dr. and when I came back with an HPV+ Pap she told me it’s very common. She had it, another one of my friends has it, and she said basically anything with more than 2 partners has a high likelyhood of having it. There are apparently hundreds of strands and most are no cause for alarm. Most of the time they can remove them. I was really freaked out because they never told us this stuff (and I was already over 26 when Gardasil even came out), but they weren’t concerned and told me I shouldn’t be.
I’m sorry you’re going through all of this 🙁
Post # 13
@Magdalena: Unfortunately, I know what you’re going through (minus the TTC part).
A few months before I started dating my now Fiance, I had my regular yearly exam, in which they discovered I had an abnormal pap. I went back in a few weeks later for a colposcopy/biopsy, in which they confirmed that I had high-risk HPV (one of the 2 strains out of more than 100 that can cause cancer). I freaked out. I cried, and I was a mess.
Not only was I infected with high-risk HPV, but I had level 3 cervical dysplasia (level 4 is pre-cancer). Being that I was 22, didn’t have a lot of partners, and went in for my regular yearly exam, I was terrified.
To get rid of it, they scheduled me for a LEEP (loop electrosurgical excision procedure). I took off work and went to my gyno for the the minor surgery, which wasn’t that bad, but still not fun. They numbed my pelvic region and used a small metal loop to basically burn/scrape off part of my cervix that was infected. It was uncomfortable and I had period-like cramps for a few days, but I was back to work the next day. The best part? I only have a 10% chance of having the virus coming back. The bad part? When I have kids in a few years, I could go into pre-term labor since my cervix is now weaker. Also, I have to have paps every 6 months for a few years.
I know that was a lot of details, but I wanted to let you know that I have been through the same thing, only I was VERY close to having it be life-changing. In most cases, HPV clears up on its own. In cases like mine, it takes a little more work and precaution, but there is a way to battle it.
Hoping for the best for you! It will be ok! 🙂
Post # 14
I usually only lurk but just had to reply to you! I’m very sorry about the miscarriage.As for the bad PAP, please don’t worry: I had abnormal paps, freaked out and talked to all my friends about this, and guess what? Almost every single one had a bad pap at some point. In some, it just went away, others opted to have LEEP or cryo.
In fact, my good friend is a doc and explained that HPV and abnormal paps are exremely common in young women (because cell change is more rapid).
Also, not sure about the condoms recommendation, because I”m pretty sure HPV can be passed through skin-to-skin contact. http://dailyuw.com/news/2007/aug/08/hpv-is-at-your-fingertips/
Don’t worry though!Keep up with your tests, eat well and be good to yourself 🙂
Post # 15
First, as PPs have mentioned, HPV is incredibly common. Also, while you can’t cure it, it can go dormant. Also, I have several friends with HPV and its barely detectable adn for two, it’s not detectable (one says she’s cured, but it doesn’t ever go away entirely). Low risk HPV is pretty good, as far as that goes. As for the 6 month pap, they probably just want to re-check right after diagnosis and see how you’re doing. You’re likely to have yearly paps, adn then you can always call up your dr if you notice anythign different.
Post # 16
@itshollyagain – You are very correct. As I was reading all the posts, I wanted to say, it never goes away! You will always have the virus. However I have it and I did have a colopscopy done, regular paps every 6 months for a year and a half. Now I am fine, only have to have one once a year.
OP – As far as you never having sex and getting it from your partner. Unless one of his previous partners told him they had it, there was no way for him to know. The only visible way to know is if he got or has gotten warts. I contracted it from an ex boyfriend. Obviously I would have seen the warts, but he was a “silent” carrier. Honestly I know you are concerned, but as most PP’s said you caught it early and keeping up on it is the best thing to do. I wouldn’t freak out too much 🙂
@anybeede – You should really tell your partner! I think hiding something like this is horrible. I would get all of the information together before you approach him. Letting him know there was no way for you to know and it shouldn’t affect him.