80% of unvaccinated adults will pick up HPV at some point in their life. Most commonly there are no symptoms.
Sometimes HPV can develop into warts although it is important to remember that not everyone gets warts from HPV.
For anyone with a cervix, sometimes an abnormal cervical smear may be the first presentation of HPV.
"HPV testing" is not available as part of a sexual health check (routine check up) for males or females, as there is no swab or blood test that can check for all HPV types and also because, in some people, the virus is "hibernating" at levels that are not detectable by testing.
HPV can be tested for in conjunction with a cervical smear. The purpose of this test is to help the doctor in further management decisions on abnormal cervical smear results (although a cervical smear is not a test for HPV).
The HPV test that is done in conjunction with cervical smears only tests for HPV 16, 18 and several other high-risk HPV types. HPV tests are geared to high-risk HPV types only and do not include all the types of HPV.
Cervical Smears and Human Papillomavirus Infection (HPV)