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HomeAnswersObstetrics and GynecologyhpvWhat does it mean if I test positive for HPV with abnormal pap test?

HPV is revealed from my abnormal pap test. What should I do as a preventive measure?


The following is an actual conversation between an iCliniq user and a doctor that has been reviewed and published as a Premium Q&A.

Medically reviewed by

Dr. Vinodhini J.

Published At April 21, 2020
Reviewed AtNovember 29, 2023

Patient's Query

Hello doctor,

My gynecologist told me that I had an abnormality in my pap test, and I have HPV. Eventually, she will need to look at my cervix to make sure what strain it is. The information she gave me was very bland. All she told me was that if I have sex just use a condom, which I always do. But I wanted to know, what can I do physically and sexually with what I have?


Welcome to icliniq.com.

May I know what was the abnormality detected on your pap smear? As per your gynecologist, if you have got HPV (human papillomavirus) infection (high-risk HPV strains), that is responsible for the development of cervical cancer, you need to be further evaluated. So your gynecologist would be having a look at your cervix through a magnified camera that can pick up certain changes on the cervix, and can hint on the development of any precancerous changes. If present it can be tackled at an early stage before actual cancer sets it. So cervical cancer screening methods can detect changes almost five years before the actual development of cancer, so it is advisable you get regular pap smears as advised by your gynecologist and be under her follow. It would have been helpful if you could share the reports of pap smear and HPV testing with me so that I could guide you better. The reason your gynecologist asked to use condoms is that HPV infection is usually acquired through sexual contact. So to prevent repeated infection and also to prevent other sexually transmitted infections, which can further aid in acquiring HPV infection can be prevented by using condoms regularly.

Preventive measures

Regular pap and HPV testing. Avoid smoking and multiple sexual partners.

Same symptoms don't mean you have the same problem. Consult a doctor now!

Dr. Sravanthi Nuthalapati
Dr. Sravanthi Nuthalapati

Obstetrics and Gynecology

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