HPV Transmission Through Kissing – Possible?

HPV TransmissionHPV transmission occurs through sexual contact. HPV stands for human papilloma virus. Over 100 strains of HPV virus have been identified. Genital warts and cancer can be caused by about 40 strains. HPV transmission can occur even when no symptoms are present. A pap test can detect HPV in women, but HPV testing for men has not yet been developed. While HPV transmission usually occurs when people have sex, a 2009 Ohio State study proved that the virus can also be transmitted through kissing with the mouth open and through oral sex.

The HPV virus in men can cause warts on the genitals. Even perianal warts can develop. Just as it does in men, HPV can cause genital warts in women. There are a few strains of HPV that also cause cancer. A vaccination, Gardisil, has been developed to protect both men and women from the human papilloma virus. The vaccine is given in several doses to young people ages 9 to 26. Although the vaccination is helpful in preventing the development of HPV, the only way to be sure to prevent HPV transmission is by conscientious use of a condom every time one has sex, genital contact, or mouth to genital contact.

HPV warts can grow on the genitals, groin, anus or thighs. These warts vary in appearance. They may be flat, raised, or shaped like a cauliflower head. Most of the time, these warts don’t cause any pain. However, warts that grow inside the vagina can cause pain and may bleed during intercourse. After a person has sexual contact with an infected person, it may take weeks or months before warts actually appear. If you suspect that you have HPV warts, you should consult your health professional. He or she will recommend treatment and can explain your options for wart removal.