Attentive to the myths and truths about the human papillomavirus

Anyone who has been or is sexually active can contract and develop the Human papilloma virus (HPV). In addition to other diseases related to the virus. According to information from the World Health Organization, it is estimated that 90% of the population, among sexually active men and women, will be infected with the human papillomavirus at some point in their lives.

That is why, specialists from the NGO ‘A Life For Dakota’; The first and only organization in Peru that works to promote a culture of prevention of diseases through vaccination, clarifies 5 myths and the truths about this dangerous virus that affects both men and women:

HPV is only transmitted through sexual intercourse

TRUE. It is transmitted primarily through sexual contact, and most people become infected shortly after sexual activity begins if they have not been vaccinated, but penetrative sex is not required for transmission to occur. Genital skin-to-skin contact is a clearly established mode of transmission, and HPV can be transmitted even though the infected person does not show any signs or symptoms.

Getting vaccinated against HPV encourages sexual life in adolescents

FAKE. Several studies have shown that girls who have been vaccinated against HPV are no more likely to engage in sexual activities at an early age than those who are not vaccinated. Therefore, it is important that 5th grade girls can be vaccinated against this virus to prevent cervical cancer because it is one of the main causes of mortality in Peruvian women, and this vaccine is applied two doses with a 6 month interval in the arm.

HPV is a silent evil

TRUE. HPV has no symptoms and in most cases the immune system will rid the body of the infection. Therefore, the importance of performing preventive check-ups that identify any abnormal cells in women. Because in certain cases, cell growth is kept silently, undetected, until several years pass when cancer or another disease that generates this virus develops.

The human papillomavirus (HPV) is one of the most common sexually transmitted diseases (Photo: Dissemination)

Only women get the human papillomavirus

FAKE. Women and men are at risk of becoming infected with HPV at some point in their lives, which could lead to various types of cancer over the years, such as cancer of the vagina, vulva, penis, anus and throat. However, women with the persistent virus are at higher risk of developing cervical cancer.

HPV is synonymous with promiscuity

FAKE. 90% of human beings will acquire the virus at some point in their lives. It is very easy to contract and transmit and you can catch it from the first time you have any type of sexual contact.

For this reason, the NGO ‘Una Vida Por Dakota’, Through the campaign ‘Vacunar para la Vida’, it will be announced that in Peru we have 17 vaccines that protect the population from preventable diseases, such as whooping cough, rotavirus, hepatitis B, tuberculous meningitis, chickenpox, pneumococcus, influenza, diphtheria, among others. In this way, children under 5 years of age, adolescents, pregnant women, older adults and patients with chronic diseases, will be able to get vaccinated free of charge in public health centers nationwide. For more information, go to

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