Papilloma risk factors

     Risk factors increase the frequency of occurrence. Several risk factors have been put regarding dysplasia, caused by papilloma, including multiple intercourse partners, the early onset of smoking, STDs, particularly the human papilloma virus (HPV) and HIV.

Human papilloma virus infection

     80-90% of women with cervical dysplasia have also papilloma infection. Human papilloma virus (HPV), are actually a group comprising more than 80 strains. Almost one third are sexually transmitted, and some strains cause genital warts. The strains most commonly found in precancerous lesions and cervical cancer are types 16 and 18. Other strains with high potential for malignancy include 31, 33, 35, 39, 45, 51, 52, 56, 58 and 68, together causing nearly 90% of dysplasia and cancerous lesions caused by the human papilloma virus.

     Almost all papilloma infections cure in 6 months and women develop immunity. Papilloma infection usually does not cause symptoms, and patients do not even know they are infected. The untreated papilloma infection can cause cervical dysplasia and persistence, and most experts believe that this virus is responsible for changing the cell in dysplasia.

Papilloma prevention

     Women can minimize the risk of cervical dysplasia and may reduce its risk of cancer transformation, following these tips:

  • Pap smears - the effectuation of cytology to track changes in the cervix tissue. Early identification of dysplasia it prevents cancer development.
  • Avoiding high-risk sexual behavior - practicing monogamy or reducing the number of sexual partners, it reduces exposure to STDs, and the use of contraception like condoms. Intercourse can transmit the papilloma virus, and condoms do not provide 100% protection. Human papilloma virus can determine warts, which often remain undiagnosed and asymptomatic.
  • Avoiding smoking
  • Diet - it is recommended the consumption of fruit and vegetables every day. They contain beta core folic acid, vitamin A and vitamin C which protects against cervical dysplasia. Some experts recommend vitamin supplements.

Papilloma diagnosis

     Pap smear (cervical cytologic examination Babes Pap) - is the most important diagnostic of cervical dysplasia, which is caused by papilloma. It is easy to perform, painless, causing only minor discomfort. Normal vaginal discharge contains cells from the cervix and uterus. Gynecologist remove a few cells scraped from the cervix with a brush or small tool designed for this purpose. Cells are placed on a slide and sent to the laboratory, where they are examined microscopically.

     Pap smear is not 100% accurate. Incorrect results occur in 15-25% of cases. Cervical cancer is diagnosed in 5% of cases.

     Causes of incorrect results include:

  • Human error (the test must be performed by experienced specialists, in a reference laboratory);
  • Insufficient number of cells in the sample;
  • Menstrual blood present in the sample;
  • Temporary changes due to tissue taken medications, infections, pregnancy.

     If atypical cells are found, the doctor may recommend other tests.

     Testing for human papilloma virus - due to association of human papilloma virus (HPV) and cervical cancer, this test helps establish the behavior for women with atypical cells. This way it is tested the presence of the genetic material of human papilloma virus or viral DNA in cells of cervical tissue. If testing is positive for a strain with high risk, is most likely to be precancerous lesions. If the test is negative, it is most likely to be benign lesions.

     Colposcopy - depending on the severity of dysplasia, the human papilloma virus testing results and other risk factors, colposcopy represents the next step in diagnosis. Colposcopy is generally practiced if the affected cervical tissue is visible. This relatively simple procedure takes 10-15 minutes. A solution of dilute acetic acid is applied to remove the cervical mucus and visualization of atypical cells. Using an intense light and a special microscope (called colposcope) the doctor can see small areas of the cervix. Acetic acid and Colposcopes lens makes abnormal cells appear white colored and the normal ones pink. If atypical cells are observed biopsy is performed.

     Cervical dysplasia is a notion used to describe the appearance of abnormal cells in the structure of cervix, the lower part of the uterus. Tissue changes in the cervix are classified mild, moderate and severe. While dysplasia itself does not cause health problems, is considered a pre-cancerous condition. Untreated, dysplasia sometimes progresses to early forms of cancer known as cervical carcinoma in situ or invasive cancer.

     It may take 10 years or more until cervical dysplasia evolve to cancer. Cervical dysplasia can be diagnosed by a Pap smear, the single and most important step which women must do to prevent cervical cancer. Mild dysplasia is the most common, and in 70% of cases it heals without intervention (for example cervical tissue restored normal without treatment). In the case of moderate to severe dysplasia is unlikely to heal on its own and have a higher rate of progression to cancer. The greater is the anomaly, the greater the risk of developing cervical cancer is.

     Cervical dysplasia does not cause symptoms, therefore regular screening and early diagnosis is important. Early detection and treatment of dysplasia are essential for preventing cancer. For this reason, most doctors prefer excision of suspicious lesions and make frequent Pap smears to monitor the appellants. Although cervical dysplasia can occur at any age, is a peak in women between 25 and 35 years. Most cases of dysplasia can be cured with proper treatment and monitoring. Without treatment, 30-50% of cases may progress to invasive cancer.