What is human papillomavirus?
HPV is a group of over 100 viruses, mostly spread through sexual contact. Approximately 80 percent of women get at least one type of HPV at some point in life, making it an important health issue to be aware of. Usually, HPV doesn’t cause any symptoms, and infection clears on its own without treatment and without causing any health issues. Many people with HPV don’t even know they have it. However, if the infection doesn’t go away, it can cause symptoms several months, sometimes years, later. A persistent HPV infection can lead to genital warts or warts on the hands and feet. A few strains of HPV can also cause cancer, particularly cancer of the cervix (the opening that connects the uterus and vagina).