Papillomavirus or HPV is a microorganism that has dozens of subspecies. Depending on the strain of the virus a person has, certain changes occur in the skin, mucous membranes, and internal organs.
HPVs related to oncogenic subspecies are especially dangerous, that is, they increase the risk of developing malignant diseases. An analysis of papilloma, carried out in time, helps to establish the strain of the papillomavirus and, accordingly, receive antiviral treatment, which is also cancer prevention.
Causes of HPV
The human papilloma virus is one of the most widespread viruses worldwide.
It is believed that one or more strains of this microorganism can be found in almost 90% of the population. Such a wide distribution of HPV is due to the ease of its transmission.
The virus is transmitted only from person to person, but in various ways. The most basic is sexual, and it can be traditional or oral or anal sexual contact. HPV can pass from the mother during childbirth to the baby, and often after a while papillomas are detected in the child's mouth and throat.
Often the papilloma virus is transmitted by contact, that is, through broken skin or when different people use certain personal items. The microorganism perfectly retains its viability in a moist and warm environment, so it is easy to become its owner after visiting a bath or pool.
Some features of sexual activity increase the risk of infection. This is its early onset, frequent change of partners, sexually transmitted diseases, abortions in women. In most cases, women are sexually infected with HPV, which doctors associate with the anatomical features of the structures of their genital organs.
The papilloma virus does not always appear immediately, in most cases several months and years pass before its external manifestation on the skin and mucous membranes.
Various provoking factors are to blame for the activation of the pathogen, their group includes:
- Pronounced weakening of the immune system. This is observed after severe infectious diseases, after prolonged treatment with antibiotics, with frequent respiratory diseases.
- The negative impact of prolonged and frequent psychoemotional stress.
- The presence of chronic diseases of the genital area, urinary organs, digestive tract.
- Bad habits: long-term smoking, alcohol abuse.
The activation of the virus leads to the fact that it accumulates in large numbers in a certain area of the body or on the mucous membranes and changes the structure and function of the cells located here. The result of this process is the appearance of warts and papillomas.
Particularly dangerous are genital warts that appear on the external genitalia and in women inside the vagina. Growths on the skin can be single or multiple, they are often injured, which increases the risk of degeneration of normal cells into atypical ones.
How and why is an analysis for the human papillomavirus given?
When papillomas appear on the human body, a dermatologist can definitely say that a virus is present in the body of this patient.
But in order for the treatment to be as effective as possible, laboratory diagnostics are needed to determine the type of virus and its quantity in the body.
It is imperative to determine the strain of HPV if papillomatous growths are detected:
- In the external genitalia, in women in the vagina and in men in the penis and urethra.
- In the area of the throat and mouth.
- around the year.
The analysis in this case allows you to establish whether the virus belongs to an oncogenic or non-oncogenic group.
This allows the doctor to predict the outcome of the disease and prescribe a treatment that will prevent the probability of developing a malignant lesion. An analysis for the human papillomavirus is necessary, and if precancerous conditions are detected, in women it is dysplasia or leukoplakia of the cervix.
Papillomavirus testing is recommended for every woman after 30 years. Ideally, it should be repeated once every three to five years. Such an attitude to health will make it possible to identify the development of atypical cells in the early stages of their appearance.
To determine HPV in the human body, various diagnostic methods have been developed. The patient takes blood for analysis, scraping and smearing in women from the cervical canal and cervix. In men, cells from the mucous layer of the urethra, the secret of the prostate, are needed for analysis.
Before performing the analysis, it is recommended to adhere to several rules. Male patients should not urinate for one and a half hours. A woman during hygiene the night before should not take a shower or use bactericidal detergents.
If necessary, if HPV is suspected, a biopsy is performed. That is, a small piece of tissue is taken from the cell transformation zone.
Modern medical centers have various methods of detecting HPV in the human body. The most used are the following:
- PCR - polymerase chain reaction. This method is based on the detection of human papillomavirus DNA, which makes it possible to find this microorganism with almost the highest probability. The study requires biological fluids: blood, saliva, urine, amniotic fluid, or scrapings from the mucous layer of the cervix or urethra. DNA diagnosis also helps establish the type of microorganism and its quantitative relationship at the time of sampling.
- The Digin test is a modern and highly sensitive analysis that allows you to assign a virus to one of a hundred strains and determine its oncogenicity. To analyze the papilloma, it is necessary to scrape the vagina or urethra. The interpretation of the results obtained is carried out by a doctor. The Digin test allows you to detect the concentration of the virus, which indicates a high risk of degeneration of altered cells into cancer cells. Therefore, this study is necessary to prescribe the most effective preventive treatment.
In case of positive test results or in case of doubtful results, a second diagnosis is prescribed. It allows you to evaluate the results of treatment and accurately determine whether a person is infected with HPV.
But even with negative results, anyone, if possible, should be tested regularly, since it is possible to become infected with the virus at any time.
Characteristics of the survey in women.
Diagnosis of papillomavirus in women has its own characteristics. The most informative is a qualitatively taken scraping from the zone of visible changes and the cervical canal.
The material is obtained with a special brush, at the same time taking a smear for cytology. In some cases, a universal medical probe can be used for sampling. The material should not be taken during menstruation as it will show unreliable results.
Patients of a gynecologist who have not reached the age of thirty are assigned only cytology. HPV screening before age 30 is not informative; infection in young people is thought to occur in secret.
After 30 years, cytology is prescribed along with tests for papillomavirus. At this time, it is important not to miss the moment that indicates the degeneration of normal cells into cancer cells.
The role of genotyping?
Genotyping is the laboratory determination of the virus type. Such a study has several advantages, these are:
- Simultaneous detection of several virus strains.
- Determination of the degree of oncogenicity of HPV. Cervical cancer is thought to occur if a woman has HPV types 16 and 18.
- The possibility of recognizing reinfection of a persistent (chronic) infection during repeated tests.
The identification of oncogenic strains allows the doctor to choose the treatment regimen that will give the maximum antiviral effect in the body and provide preventive prevention of the development of cancers.
Re-genotyping shows the effectiveness of the therapy, since reinfection with the same strain is not possible.
The cost of testing for the presence of human papillomavirus in the body depends on the scheduled examination.
Conventional PCR diagnosis in most clinics is inexpensive. The same method with the determination of various types of viruses and their quantitative presence in the body is already more expensive. The highest cost of the Dijin test.