Facebook Pixel

Comment Reply

Hi Alison,

That is a good question.

Having unprotected sex or not using a barrier method is a risk factor for exposure to HPV. If you use condoms, they are 70% effective in protecting you from contracting HPV. So in the sense that women who use oral contraception are less likely to use a barrier method, oral contraceptive use would be an indirect risk factor in HPV exposure.

However only a small percent of women who are exposed to HPV will develop cervical cancer and a large percent of women who present with mild dysplasia will clear the virus without any treatment.

The emerging research is suggesting that oral contraceptives, due to their hormonal influence, contribute to the progression of cervical dysplasia to cervical cancer. As I stated in my last post, this is thought to be due to the way the HPV interacts with estrogen receptors and estrogen's influence on the virus.

So in a sense, oral contraceptive use has a two fold risk. It can indirectly increase your risk for contracting the virus and directly increase your risk for disease progression if you have HPV related cervical dysplasia.

Hope this helps clarify things for you.

January 18, 2010 - 9:58am


Enter the characters shown in the image.
By submitting this form, you agree to EmpowHER's terms of service and privacy policy