Can Men Get HPV and How Does It Effect Them?

Men can get HPV, or human papillomavirus as it affects both men and women, according to the Centers for Disease Control. Men who are infected with the virus may never experience symptoms, but they may be at risk for developing cancers of their urinary and reproductive organs.

While most men who get HPV do not have adverse health effects from the virus, the risk of developing cancers of the penis, anus and the oropharnyx may increase after being infected with HPV, states the CDC. The virus may also cause genital warts and discomfort in a small group of patients. Men with compromised immune systems as well as gay and bisexual men are at greater risk of developing HPV-related diseases.

In both men and women, HPV usually does not cause symptoms, notes the CDC. For this reason, many people pass on the disease without being aware of it. Both men and women may have HPV for many years and may pass it on to numerous sexual partners.

HPV is a sexually transmitted disease that most of the sexually active people in the United States are infected with at some point in their lives, says the CDC. HPV passes from person to person through genital contact and most commonly is transmitted during vaginal or anal sex. It may also be passed through oral sex in rare cases.