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Now, onto today's topic: the dos and don'ts of dating someone who has HPV.
Types 16 and 18 are to blame for most HPV-related cases of cancer."Unless it causes untreated cancer, HPV is not lethal, and it's very likely to simply go away on its own," Pizarro says.
However, "Even if a person—male or female—who's been exposed doesn't develop cancer, HPV can be passed on to subsequent partners and lead to cancer for them.
That means if you sleep with a man and give him HPV, there will be no way for him to know he has it unless it happens to be a strain that causes genital warts and he happens to get them from it.
If you have one of the higher-risk strains, it could put the guy at risk for several types of cancer, and telling him gives him the chance to talk to his doctor and keep a closer eye on his health.
Those factors combined with the fact that HPV is often harmless means it's natural to wonder if telling is worth it, he says, and some doctors even say that depending on the specific circumstances, it OK not to."If you know you are HPV positive [with a low-risk strain not known to commonly cause cancer], I don’t feel you have to disclose that to your partner," Jacques Moritz, ob/gyn at Weill Cornell Medicine and New York-Presbyterian, tells SELF, noting that even though safe-sex barriers like condoms and dental dams don't fully prevent HPV transmission, you should still use them.
Even ob/gyns have different ways of thinking about the potential risks, so be sure to bring up any questions or concerns with your own doctor who can discuss what your specific diagnosis really means.
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We’re always hearing that we could be having better sex, a better orgasm, or a better relationship.
This needs to be disclosed the way any other STD needs to be disclosed," Pizarro says."There are potential lifelong manifestations of HPV," Abdur-Rahman says.
To be honest, safe sex isn't enough to fully prevent you getting STDs.But how often do we hear the nitty-gritty of how we can actually better understand our deepest desires and most embarrassing questions?