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Dr Ahmad
Dr Ahmad,
Category: Urology
Satisfied Customers: 134
Experience:  Expert
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I had a encounter with a friend that involved only receiving

Customer Question

Hi there,I had a sexual encounter with a friend that involved only receiving oral sex. This encounter was around a month ago. The friend has since been diagnosed with HPV via a smear test.She tested positive for a high risk strain.As a male I'm unable to test my status.I would like advice on how to handle future sexual partners, I have quite an active sex life and an open relationship.Should I be informing future partners about this encounter?
Given it was a one off oral encounter it sounds like the chance of transmission is very low. Any advice would help.
Submitted: 7 days ago.
Category: Urology
Expert:  Dr Ahmad replied 7 days ago.
Good evening welcome to JA.
Customer: replied 7 days ago.
Hi there
Customer: replied 7 days ago.
Did you receive my question?
Expert:  Dr Ahmad replied 7 days ago.

Preventing infection is the best protection – while there is no treatment or cure for HPV itself, the symptoms of HPV can be treated. This means that the only way to protect yourself against HPV is to take precautions to prevent yourself from being infected in the first place.

Below are some of the ways men can protect themselves from HPV:

  • HPV vaccine – the HPV vaccine (Gardasil 9) is the most effective method to protect yourself against high-risk types of HPV, which can cause cancer and genital warts. Gardasil 9 protects against HPV-types 6, 11, 16, 18, 31, 33, 45, 52, and 58, which are the 9 types of HPV that cause majority of HPV-related diseases and cancers.
  • Practicing safe-sex – using condoms every time you have sex lowers the chance that you will be infected by HPV. However, as HPV can be transmitted by skin-to-skin contact, condoms are not 100% effective in preventing the spread of HPV.
  • Abstinence or monogamy – abstaining from sex, or only having sex with someone who has only ever had sex with you, is the only way to ensure that you will not contract HPV.
  • HPV Tests – most HPV test kits that are available are specifically for women, using a cervical swab to take the sample. Male test kits do exist, but they may be harder to acquire or access. In addition, because HPV is so common; more often than not, it will not lead to health problems Men who have sex with men can get an anal pap test, similar to a cervical screening. This test checks if there are cells in the anus that could become cancerous, so any abnormal cells that have been detected can be removed before they develop into cancer.

Expert:  Dr Ahmad replied 7 days ago.

In the vast majority of cases, men infected with HPV have no symptoms. Signs of HPV can include warts on the genitals, anus, or groin area; common warts on the hands, fingers, or face; and plantar warts, hard growths on the soles of your feet.

There’s actually no cure for the virus itself. Current treatments are aimed at the symptoms of HPV, such as warts, and include medication and removing growths with cryotherapy or lasers.

Expert:  Dr Ahmad replied 7 days ago.

Most cases of HPV go away on their own—more than 90 percent of HPV infections are cleared by the immune system within two years, usually within the first six months after infection.

But some strains of HPV aren’t cleared by the body and can cause cancer. Every year, about 19,400 women and 12,100 men are affected by cancers caused by HPV. Genital cancer is much rarer in men than it is in women.

Expert:  Dr Ahmad replied 7 days ago.

The moral obligation would be to inform future partners and moreover practicing safe sex would be the best way to prevent transmission in case you have HPV.

Customer: replied 7 days ago.
But if I can't access a test I'm looking for guidance on how to talk to future partners
Customer: replied 7 days ago.
what the chances are I have actually caught anything
Customer: replied 7 days ago.
Well I guess I'm confused on how long those obligations last and what to tell partners.How likely is it I contracted HPV from one encounter? And how long do I need to tell future partners for?
Expert:  Dr Ahmad replied 7 days ago.

I cannot comment on the chance as it would depend on whether your friend has known oral HPV. Then there certainly would be risk of transmission.I cannot tell you exact figures. HPV risk is not fully known and is difficult to estimate with figures.

In terms of talking to future partners it would be your moral obligation to tell them but like I said HPV can be cleared by the immune system. As long as you practice safe sex then that should protect both you and your partner.

Customer: replied 7 days ago.
I should tell future partners for the rest of my life? I'm confused as to where this ends if I can't get tested
Expert:  Dr Ahmad replied 6 days ago.

You don’t know if you actually have HPV unless you develop symptoms, so it is completely up to you as to whether you tell your partners. There is no hard and fast rule regarding HPV as it is difficult to ascertain individual status. The main thing is to ensure you practice safe sex onwards.