Human papillomavirus (HPV) is a sexually transmitted infection (STI) that can cause various symptoms in females, including:
- Genital warts: These are small, flesh-colored or gray growths that appear on the vulva, vagina, anus, or cervix.
- Abnormal Pap smear: HPV infection can cause abnormal changes in the cells of the cervix, which can be detected by a Pap smear.
- Cervical cancer: Certain types of HPV can cause cervical cancer. Symptoms may not be noticeable until the cancer has advanced, but may include abnormal vaginal bleeding, pelvic pain, or pain during sex.
- Vulvar cancer: HPV can also cause cancer of the vulva, which may cause itching, burning, or pain in the genital area.
- Anal cancer: HPV can cause cancer of the anus, which may cause rectal bleeding, pain, itching, or discharge.
- Vaginal cancer: HPV can cause cancer of the vagina, which may cause vaginal bleeding, discharge, or pain during sex.
It’s important to note that many people with HPV do not experience any symptoms and may not know they have the infection. Regular Pap smears and STI testing are important for detecting and treating HPV and related conditions. If you are experiencing any symptoms or have concerns about HPV, you should speak with a healthcare provider.