HPV screening is critical, but many women aren't aware of this due to lack of education on the subject. The OB/GYNs at Capital Women’s Care are here to help Arlington, Virginia area patients with not only education and screenings but also with preventive vaccinations. If patients test positive for HPV, the experienced physicians can start an effective treatment plan right away.
The OB/GYNs at Capital Women's Care typically perform HPV screenings during pelvic exams, often as part of a well-woman checkup.
The doctor removes a minimal amount of cervical cells through gentle scraping or with a cervical brush. This cell sample gets tested for HPV. Pap smear and HPV screening often happen at the same time.
Today, doctors recommend that both girls and boys who are 11 or 12 should have the HPV vaccine, although it can start as early as age nine. Teenagers and young adults who didn't have the HPV vaccine when they were younger should have it now. When you wait until an older age -- for example, the early 20s -- to have the vaccine, you'll have three doses of the vaccine instead of two.
Women can have the HPV vaccine up to age 26, while men can have the vaccine through age 21. Certain exceptions exist, for example, young people who identify as transgender can have the vaccine until age 26 rather than age 21. Talk to your Capital Women's Care OB/GYN about your specific situation to determine an appropriate vaccination schedule.
HPV isn't well understood by many patients today, and the Capital Women's Care OB/GYNs strive to change that. HPV can be very damaging, but it's also very preventable, especially if you start early. Our Capital Women's Care OB/GYNs are always happy to answer questions about HPV.
HPV treatment depends on several factors, including its specific presentation in the patient. Your Capital Women's Care OB/GYN can treat genital warts with topical, oral, or other types of medication if needed.
If the doctor notes severe abnormalities in the HPV screening, they may recommend treatment that prevents those abnormal cells from becoming cancerous. The treatment may include:
Concerned about HPV? The Capital Women's Care team is here to help with education, screening, and treatment. Make an appointment with the online tool anytime.