Human papillomavirus: what every provider should know

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Persistence of human papillomavirus (HPV) infection is necessary for the development of cervical cancer. Additionally, infection with HPV is implicated in the majority of cases of other genital tract malignancies including vulvar, penile, and vaginal cancer. HPV testing and vaccination are a routine part of obstetrical/gynecological clinical practice. With an enhanced public awareness of HPV infections, many patients turn to their obstetricians/gynecologists with questions about transmission, testing, and prevention. In this review, we will discuss the biology of HPV, epidemiology of disease, methods and indications for testing, and vaccination strategies.

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