Human Papillomavirus

HPV, or human papillomavirus, is a virus that infects the skin and the cells lining body cavities. It is spread through close skin-to-skin contact, often during sexual activity. It is a very common infection which usually causes no symptoms at all.

8 out of 10



will be infected with the virus at some point in their lives.

There are hundreds of types of HPV, most are harmless but


can cause cervical cancer.

People with persistent infections of "high-risk" HPV types are those who are most likely to go on to develop cervical cancer.

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Cancer Research UK is a registered charity in England and Wales (1089464), Scotland (SC041666) and the Isle of Man (1103). A company limited by guarantee. Registered company in England and Wales (4325234) and the Isle of Man (5713F). Registered address: Angel Building, 407 St John Street, London EC1V 4AD.

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