The Student Health Center (SHC) offers women's health care which includes gynecological examinations (PAP and sexually transmitted disease testing and treatment), oral contraceptive counseling and prescriptions, pregnancy tests, and urinary tract infection diagnosis and treatment. PAP tests and STD tests are collected and sent to an outside laboratory (Labcorp or Healthpartners Lab) for evaluation. These labs can bill the student's medical insurance company. Please click laboratory testing for more information.The SHC does not keep a supply of oral contraceptives in its pharmacy; however, the SHC can write or refill a prescription for any oral contraceptive a student may be taking. The prescription can then be taken to an area pharmacy to be filled. ACOG (American College of Gynecologists) recommends that women who are sexually active have a pap smear performed either at age 21 or three years after the first sexual intercourse encounter. Please click on the following links for more information on gynecological health: urinary tract infection and vaginal infections. For important detailed information on HPV, see the article written below by Hallie Stewart, Class of 2010.
Let's Talk about Sex and HPV
Written by Hallie Stewart ’10
Let’s face it – sex, sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and vaccines are not the most comfortable thing to talk about. But did you know that that the CDC (Center for Disease Control and Prevention) estimates that 19 million people in the United States alone will be infected with some type of a STD each year? Almost half of these people will be infected between the ages of 15 and 24. This age range happens to fall right into our college years. Let’s not be shy… not all, but most people in college are having sex. Some people are even having a lot of sex with multiple partners. And this is the age when people are becoming affected with life-altering STDs.
Among these STDs is HPV (Human Papillomavirus). The CDC also estimates that approximately 6 million people in the United States are infected with HPV annually. This concludes that 80% of women will have had some form of HPV in their lifetime. This makes HPV the most common STD among young women.
HPV (Human Papillomavirus) is the name for a group of viruses that infect the skin. There are more than 100 different types, and 40 of those type cause genital HPV. Because HPV is an infection of the skin, it is transmitted through sexual skin-to-skin contact. This includes; vaginal, oral or rectal contact. Therefore, non-penetrative sexual contact can cause HPV. This means that you do not have to have sex to become infected with HPV. Genital HPV causes genital warts and cervical cancer (it is also linked to other cancers such as rectal cancer, esophageal cancer and vaginal cancer).
So, how do you get HPV? From guys. Men who are infected with the virus do not usually show signs or symptoms of HPV, unless they are displaying an obvious infection of genital warts. There is also no way for men to know they have HPV; there is currently no FDA-approved test to detect HPV in men. Due to men’s lack of awareness, it is easily spread to their partners. However, for women, HPV can be detected through the presence of abnormal cells in pap smears. Ladies, please get yearly pap smears (it could save your life!).
There is no cure for HPV infections. However, HPV is a highly preventable STD. It can be prevented through the use of condoms (when used properly and during ANY form of sexual contact) as well as the vaccine Gardasil. Gardasil protects against the types of HPV that cause cervical cancer and genital warts. It is now approved for both men and women! This vaccine could prevent three-fourths of all cervical cancers worldwide.
For my Biology Capstone, on April 13, 2010, I held a Greek 101 for the Greek women of the Randolph-Macon Community. My goal/aim was to educate Greek women about HPV. The Greek 101 went great! Approximately 75 women attended. I discussed the topics I have addressed above, in greater detail. So please feel free to e-mail me with any questions or concerns regarding HPV (email@example.com). And to the women who attended, please get your Gardasil shot today!
 National Prevention Information Network. “STDs Today.” http://www.cdcnpin.org/scripts/std/std.asp
 National Prevention Information Network. “Human Papillomavirus (HPV).” http://www.cdc.gov/hpv/
 Gardasil. “Get the Facts about HPV.” http://www.gardasil.com/hpv-and-your-child/what-is-hpv/
 National Prevention Information Network. “How common is HPV and related diseases.” http://www.cdc.gov/std/HPV/STDFact-HPV.htm#common
 The Digene HPV Test. “What Men Need to Know About HPV.” http://www.thehpvtest.com/about-hpv/faqs-for-men/
 Science News. “Vaccine Clears Major Hurdle: Injections offer new tool against cervical cancers.” http://www.thefreelibrary.com/Vaccine+clears+major+hurdle:+injections+offer+new+tool+against+...-a0138396647