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Do you have HPV for life?

Page last updated 21 June 2018

It can take many years for the HPV virus to become active, and when it does, it usually only lasts a short time. In most cases, the infection is cleared by the body in around 1-2 years. 

Most HPV infections clear up on their own and don’t cause any problems. Researchers now think that when the HPV clears up, it can remain inactive in your body unless your immune system is later compromised in some way, in which case, the HPV may become active again. When the HPV is inactive, it appears that it is not passed on to a partner. 

Sources & Citations

  1. Australian State and Territory Governments. National Cervical Screening Programme. The link between cervical cancer and HPV (human papillomavirus). Available at:$File/hpv-large.pdf  

SPANZ.SAPAS.18.04.0131a - Date of preparation May 2018