HPV stands for Human Papillomavirus which is small in size and usually infects wet areas and the skin such as the anus, vagina and the mouth. This cancer affects the genitals and can also affect other areas. This specific oral HPV that causes throat cancer is known as HPV-16. It affects both male and female. Today, there has been an increase in the number of HPV throat cancers worldwide. However, the HPV throat cancer infection epidemiology is not so well understood. This article will help us understand about the HPV throat cancer in details and how to treat it.
First and foremost, lets learn the symptoms of this virus. The most common symptom is swelling of the neck. Other symptoms of the HPV throat cancer include; feeling of numbness in the mouth, a swollen tongue, pain when swallowing food, coughing blood, lumps that are around the neck and inside the mouth, extreme weight loss among others. Oral HPV or rather HPV-16 can tend to be difficult to notice in the early stage. Some cases of oral HPV are manageable though. As mentioned earlier, it is hard to tell how oral HPV develops into throat cancer. However, it is usually transmitted mainly through oral sex. Research shows that having many partners whom one can engage in oral sex can lead to transmitting this disease. However, it can take a long time for a person who has HPV infection develop throat cancer.
People who are at risk of getting infected with this HPV infection are smokers. Smoking does not necessarily cause throat cancer. However, in case you have the HPV infection, you are at a greater risk of getting the throat cancer. Research shows that HPV-16 is mostly common in men than in women. The diagnosis of this HPV throat cancer can take a while. This is so since it cannot be detected early. Many patients discover that they have the HPV throat cancer during their dental appointment. Once the physician notices the symptoms, then the diagnosis follows. The doctor does a physical examination of your mouth through the use of a small camera so that they can check your throat.
The treatment of HPV throat cancer is no different from the other throat cancer types. The main goal for these treatments is to ensure that the cancer cells are in the throat are gotten rid off so that the spreading to other areas can stop. Once this is done, the likelihood of further complications is dealt with. The following are ways in which treatment of HPV throat cancer is done; chemotherapy, removal of cancer cells surgically, through radiation therapy and lastly through robotic surgery.
There are various ways in which someone can protect themselves from contracting the HPV throat cancer infection. One of the ways is to ensure that you use dental dams when having oral sex and using protection when having genital sex. For someone with HPV infection, they should avoid smoking so that there is no likelihood of increase of HPV throat cancer.