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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Sex Basics and Sexual Health » HPV/cervical cancer --> a few questions

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Author Topic: HPV/cervical cancer --> a few questions
kayajaaa
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Hello all !


I'd like to have a few informations about HPV and cervical cancer, which I wasn't able to get from the various pages I found on that subject. I'll try to be clear.

So a few months ago, about last October, I started experiencing symptoms I had never have before: bleeding outside my periods (it was strangely light blood, looked a bit like vinegar to me), weird vaginal discharges (yellowish, bloody/reddish, orange (!!)), pain during sex (sometimes bearable, sometimes not), and a burning sensation afterwards in the vagina and sometimes the clit too.

I suspected Chlamydia, so I got tested but the results were negative ; thus last month I asked for a smear test. I called my gyn just yesterday to have the results, and she told me the test had revealed "abnormal cell accumulation" (not sure how to translate what she said) and that she had asked for "complementary analysis for HPV".

I was a bit shocked, so I made some research on the internet about the different types of HPV and here are a few questions :

☸ what does it mean to have "abnormal cell accumulation" ? that is, is it something that occurs at the beginning of a contamination by any sort of HPV ? OR does it mean that it's already more serious ? Might this mean there is a beginning of cancer already ?

☸ I'm stressed out, because symptoms I had are not linked to the contamination by any HPV (as far as I read). BUT they are similar to those which can occur during cervical cancer. => could it be possible that this is going on already ? how much time does it take for a cancer like this to develop ? and if I had cancer, would have the gyn been able to SEE it during the physical examination I had last time ?

(I know those symptoms can be linked to many other STDs, but since the smear test was all negative apart from these cells, I can't help putting things together and stressing out :S )

☸ is there a test to detect HPV in the throat, or not ? I found contradictory answers on the forum.

☸ if there is, does it work for men too ?


Maybe it feels like I'm over-reacting, and I know Scarleteen isn't there to replace visits to a regular gynecologist, nor to make a definite diagnosis, but I just wanted to ask those few questions while waiting for the complementary results which I won't get before Feb the 7th or 8th [Frown] especially since that gyn and I do not have a very good contact, I think that she found me unnecessarily anxious when I came to see her, she didn't seem to take me very seriously and I even had to insist to get a smear test! I'm just waiting to get the results, then I'll probably go to another gyn who's more overt about what's going on with his patients' health... but just while I wait, could you answer those questions? ..........Thanks :/

Posts: 28 | From: Europe | Registered: Feb 2010  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Robin Lee
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I'm sorry to hear that your gyn wasn't very responsive to your concerns. That's a big part of health care, not just doing the exams and tests. Finding another gyn once you get these results sounds like a really good idea.

A question: was chlamydia the only STI you were tested for? The smear doesn't detect most STIs; most are detected through blood or urine tests.

No, cervical cancer is not generally obvious in a physical exam, hence the pap smear. Abnormal cells are exactly what they sound like, cells that don't look like "normal" cervical cells and warrant more examination. From what I understand, abnormal cells are not cancer cells, but they do indicate that things need to be investigated and watched closely.

There is no test for HPV in men unless they have warts (a symptom of some strains of HPV) that can be tested.

I know it's tough to wait for more info. can you use that time to look for another gyn so you can see one who better meets your needs as soon after you get the results as possible?

--------------------
Robin

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kayajaaa
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Member # 45675

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Thanks for your reply [Smile] I'm still not sure though, do "abnormal cells" ALWAYS go along with HPV, or is it the sign of something ELSE, regardless of the seriousness of what this "else" might be ?

To answer your question : apart from the smear test, I've only been tested for Chlamydia, HIV and hepatitis (my GP didn't want to make a "blind" general test). Then I got the smear test, and it's a shame but I'm actually not sure what I was tested for exactly o_O I asked my gyn over the phone if "the rest" of the test was negative, and she said "everything else, yes", and I said "everything... like, er, I don't know, gonorrhea for instance...?" (first example that came to my mind) and she repeated "yes, yes, this too". But I'm not even sure if it's true or if she just wanted to hang up
and she won't send me the details of the test ! :[

Anyway, I already know which gyn I'll see afterwards, I know one who's really great but who happened to be absent when I decided to get the testing done (which is why I went to that one).


...Oh, and what about the test for the throat ? Does it exist ?

Posts: 28 | From: Europe | Registered: Feb 2010  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Robin Lee
Volunteer Assistant Director
Member # 90293

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Well, you definitely have the right to insist on knowing everything that you were tested for when you're there at your appointment and should have her undivided attention.

I have no information that there is a specific hpv test for the throat. Usually the presence of HPV is detected through examination of vaginal tissue.

Abnormal cervical cells can be a sign of many things, not just HPV.

--------------------
Robin

Posts: 6066 | From: Washington DC suburbs | Registered: Dec 2011  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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