Freephone information line: 1800 45 45 55

HPV infection

Changes in the cells of the cervix are common. Most are caused by the human papilloma virus (HPV). HPV is a common viral infection and most adults will get it at some time in their lives. HPV is usually spread by skin to skin contact during sexual activity. Any person who has ever engaged in sexual activity is likely to have been exposed to HPV.

There are over 100 different types of HPV. Most are low risk and do not cause changes to cervical cells. Some HPV types can cause cell changes in the cervix (neck of the womb).

HPV infections can last without symptoms for many years without a person knowing about it. There is no treatment or cure for HPV infection. HPV is usually cleared by the body’s immune system. If the HPV infection does not clear up on its own, there is a greater risk of developing cervical cell changes which may need treatment.

Smoking damages the immune system's ability to clear infections, including HPV. Stopping smoking is the single most important action to help clear HPV infection.

Read the information leaflet about HPV and cervical screening.

See the answers to some frequestly asked questions about HPV

For information about the HPV vaccination programme visit HPV.ie

Next > Smear tests
Is cuid den tSeirbhís Náisiúnta Scagthástála é CervicalCheck
Bosca Oifig Phoist 161, Luimneach
Saorghlao 1800 45 45 55
CervicalCheck is part of the National Cancer Screening Service
PO Box 161 Limerick
Freephone 1800 45 45 55

Web Design by Webtrade

Is cuid den Rannóg Sláinte agus Folláine i bhFeidhmeannacht na Seirbhíse Sláinte í an tSeirbhís Náisiúnta Scagthástála. Cuimsíonn sí BreastCheck – An Clár Náisiúnta Scagthástála Cíoch, CervicalCheck – An Clár Náisiúnta Scagthástála Ceirbheacs, BowelScreen – An Clár Náisiúnta Scagthástála Putóige agus Diabetic RetinaScreen – An Clár Náisiúnta Scagthástála Reitiní do Dhiaibéitigh.

The National Screening Service is part of the Health and Wellbeing Division of the Health Service Executive. It encompasses BreastCheck – The National Breast Screening Programme, CervicalCheck – The National Cervical Screening Programme, BowelScreen – The National Bowel Screening Programme and Diabetic RetinaScreen – The National Diabetic Retinal Screening Programme.