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Petropolis Diary

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Previous edition (2680):
Thursday, March 10, 2022

Previous edition (2680): Thursday, March 10, 2022

Health

It is estimated that 50% of the male population and more than 25% of the female population are living with the virus.


Photo: Aline Furtado

Roberto Jones – special for the newspaper

The human papilloma virus (HPV) is responsible for infecting the skin or mucous membranes, causing anogenital warts and even cancers, depending on the type of virus. According to the National Cancer Institute (Inca) of the Ministry of Health, it is estimated that 50% of the world’s male population and 25% to 50% of the female population are infected with HPV. UNIFASE/FMP nurse and preceptor Aline Furtado clarifies some doubts about the disease.

According to her, there are at least 13 types of HPV that are considered oncogenic, which are those that have a higher risk or likelihood of causing persistent infections and being associated with precursor lesions. Among the HPVs with high oncogenic risk, types 16 and 18 are present in 70% of cases of cervical cancer. On the other hand, HPV 6 and 11, present in 90% of genital warts and laryngeal papillomas, are considered non-oncogenic.

The nurse notes that women and men with a uterus need more attention, since cervical cancer is the third most common malignancy in this population, after breast cancer and cancer colorectal, and is the fourth leading cause of death among women from cancer in Brazil.

Streaming

The virus can be transmitted by direct contact with infected skin or mucous membrane. “The primary means is sexual intercourse, which includes oral-genital, genital-genital, or even manual-genital contact. Therefore, HPV infection can occur even in the absence of vaginal or anal penetration. It can also there may be transmission during childbirth. The possibility of contamination by objects, the use of toilets and swimming pools or the sharing of towels and underwear has not been proven”, explains Aline.

Symptoms

According to information from Inca, most HPV infections are asymptomatic or inapparent and transient in nature, that is, they regress spontaneously. They usually present as microscopic lesions or do not produce lesions, however, it is not possible to guarantee that HPV is not present, only that it does not produce disease.

It is estimated that only about 5% of people infected with HPV will develop some form of manifestation, according to Inca. Infections can manifest clinically, presenting as cauliflower-like warts of varying size. Subclinical infections (not visible to the naked eye) can be found in the same places and have no symptoms or signs. The development of any type of clinical or subclinical lesion in other areas of the body is rare.

Aline Furtado warns that, when caused by an oncogenic virus, precursor lesions can develop which, if not identified and treated, can progress to cancer, particularly in the cervix, but also in the vagina, vulva, anus, penis, oropharynx and mouth. “Cervical cancer is a slowly growing disease, which may show no symptoms at an early stage. In more advanced cases, it can progress to intermittent vaginal bleeding or after intercourse, abnormal vaginal secretions and abdominal pain associated with urinary or intestinal disorders.

Vaccination

According to ANVISA recommendations, HPV vaccination is indicated for girls between the ages of 9 and 14, and boys between the ages of 11 and 14 can get vaccinated for free on SUS. “For people living with HIV, cancer, solid organ and bone marrow transplant recipients, the age range is wider (9 to 26 years) and the vaccination schedule is three doses (range 0, 2 and 6 months). A doctor’s prescription is required for these patients. Other age groups may have vaccines available in private services, if indicated by their doctors,” explains Aline.

According to the ANVISA registration, the quadrivalent vaccine is licensed for women between 9 and 45 years old and men between 9 and 26 years old, and the bivalent vaccine for women between 10 and 25 years old. Currently, clinics are not allowed to apply vaccines in age groups other than those established by ANVISA. “Both vaccines are more suitable for girls and boys who have not yet started their sexual life, because they are more effective in protecting individuals not exposed to the viral types present in the vaccines,” the nurse said.

Prevention

UNIFASE nurse explains that the use of condoms during penetrative sex partially protects against HPV infection, as it can also occur through contact with the skin of the vulva, perineum, perianal region and of the scrotum. “Even vaccinated women, when they reach the recommended age (from the age of 25), should periodically undergo a preventive examination (vaginal smear), because the vaccine does not protect against all oncogenic types of HPV”, he concluded.

Previous edition (2680):
Thursday, March 10, 2022

Previous edition (2680): Thursday, March 10, 2022


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