The most common sexually transmitted disease in the United States is the human papillomavirus, or HPV. In fact, some doctors go so far as to say that every sexually active person will eventually contract the virus. Most most people, the virus doesn’t cause any harm to your health. However, there are certain strains of the virus, particularly HPV Type 16 and HPV Type 18 that are linked to throat, cervical and anal cancers.
Researchers from the NYU Langone Medical Center in New York conducted a study to determine how many Americans are infected with HPV. They analyzed tissue samples of 103 healthy men and women and 748 tissue swabs of study participants’ major organs. They decoded each participant’s DNA and removed the human DNA sequences, then compared the remaining sequences to the HPV database.
There are 148 known HPV types, and 109 were detected among 69 percent of the study participants. Only four, however, had type 16 or type 18 that’s linked to cancer. This surprised some medical professionals who didn’t suspect that the infection rate was so high among healthy adults.
There is a vaccine available for HPV type 16 and type 18.
Check out the following video from Buzz Feed Yellow, entitled HPV Explained in Two Minutes.