Turkish Women Affected by human papillomavirus

I Feel Like a Fool: The Impact of HPV Tests on Turkish Women

Hüsna Sarıca Çevik, MD, a Family Medicine Specialist in Ankara, Turkey, often treats women whose lives have been blighted by human papillomavirus (HPV) and the STD diseases it can cause.

She spoke to four HPV lab-tested patients to examine the impact of the virus. Some of them had lucky escapes and caught the symptoms before they developed full-blown cancer.

They talked about STD Tests and how they have had to live with the consequences of HPV-related disease, not only in terms of the medical problems it causes but also the effect on how they and others see themselves.

They were all united in their desire for HPV Tests and vaccination to become available as part of the national routine vaccination schedule.

The Near Miss

I am a 29-year-old medical doctor. Since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, I haven’t had time to care for anything other than work. One day a week, I do paintings on wood to relax.

One day, I felt something like acne while in the shower. When I picked at it, it bled extremely badly. I looked at myself in the mirror and saw HPV-like lesions.

In the past, I have had two clear smears and STD tests. However, I was still worried about attending my gynaecologist appointment. After my diagnosis with HPV Tests, I was very sad and very angry with myself. I could guess where it came from and regretted not drawing lines for myself.

When I talked to my colleagues, I was told it was a problem that could last my whole life, and I got very upset. I wish I had gotten the vaccine. I was angry about the delay in the availability of a vaccine. My doctor told me that I needed the vaccine even though the lesions were removed. I will be getting it.

All of this disturbed my sleep, and I was anxious for a long time. It made me stay away from my boyfriend because I couldn’t share my health problems with him.

The treatment was very expensive.

Of course, I would like the vaccine administration to become widespread and available for men and women. I want my daughters and grandchildren to have the vaccine as well.

I have to say I am a little sceptical when I listen to and watch groups on the internet that are against the HPV Tests and the vaccine. But I care more about what the doctors say.

However, the HPV vaccine is expensive in Turkey, and I would like to see it included in the routine vaccination schedule.

When I think about my life and my daughter, I need the STD vaccination given to my girls. I am lucky because I have the means to buy the vaccine for my daughter. But the cost here is very high. However, it is cheaper than treatment and surgery for HPV-related cancer.

Although I currently have no ongoing treatment, I have to change my lifestyle, eat healthily, and intake of vitamins.

How do I feel?

I feel like a fool. I am a woman who uses protection in three ways in my sexual relationships:

  • Condoms
  • Oral contraceptive
  • Withdrawal

When I learned about my STD Home Test diagnosis, I cried non-stop for two days. I am always protective and attentive, so it was so kind. The worst part is that the man in my life did not even know where he got it. We may have been together for a year, but he was unaware.

So, you face the fact that you have an ignorant person in your life, and you feel like a fool for the rest of your life. The man I caught HPV from didn’t know what it was and didn’t understand that it could turn into cancer or risk infecting other women.

For my first STD surgery, I felt a lot of hatred and was very angry. When I saw my boyfriend next to me when I got out of surgery, it made me sure I wouldn’t have sexual intercourse with him for months. I felt like I was going to get dirty just by touching his skin.

Since then, I have had two more surgeries.

I still have the same anger and the same hatred.

The diagnosis caused a physical and mental collapse. Initially, I hesitated over going to the toilet in people’s homes, even though I knew it wouldn’t spread like that. Although I slowly overcame the compulsion not to go to the bathroom, I still feel I’m going to have a panic attack when I get close to someone.

I am still uncomfortable with my elf. I am scratching my skin right now. When I start dating someone, I first think of “: “What if it goes all the way to making “love?” Unfortunately, I will probably think that way for the rest of my life.

Vaccinations should be given to every individual, regardless of gender, before sexual intercourse starts at the age of 12. Regardless of sexual orientation, we all have the right to be healthy.

This should be achieved without harming, polluting, or throwing each other into endless despair.

As someone carrying this video, I don’t even want to think about someone who rejects that idea.

Unfortunately, people, including my family and friends, friends know very little about HPV Tests. They are not even aware of the necessity of the vaccine.

The Ministry of Health’s failure to include it in the routine vaccination schedule is nothing short of ignorance. It is an indisputable and ugly truth.

To other people, I would say: Please be honest. Please talk about this before having sexual intercourse, and do not play with the life of your partner or anyone else. STD Health Tests are much more important than five minutes of sure. Many people live without being aware of the danger or even caring about STD tests.

Talk about this to your children if you have, don’t, don’t let them grow up. Or would it be nice if politicians did not bury their heads in the sand like ostriches and put people’s lives in danger?

That’s nothing more than a dream.