HPV - Has my husband cheated?

So I have been married for 11 years. I had my first screening 4 years ago. It came back negative and all clear no issues.

I had another smear last month and it has come back with high risk hpv and I’ve been asked to re-smear in 12 months time.

I have researched what HPV is. I feel dirty and disgusting even though I know all the articles say you shouldnt but worst of all I’m worried my husband has cheated. I don’t see how else I’ve got it and the doctor didn’t agree but he also didn’t disagree. He said it was strange my first smear came back negative. This was only 4 years ago and we have been together for 11. Has this happened to anyone else?

I’m really struggling at the moment



HPV is a devious beastie; it can lie dormant in the body for many years, even decades. When it’s dormant it doesn’t cause problems and an HPV test will be negative. However, for whatever reasons dormant HPV can re-activate and then start to cause cervical cell changes and an HPV test will be positive. Hence it’s very possible to test HPV negative and then postive within an 11 year faithful relationship; so very important to keep up to date with cervical screening.

The worst thing about HPV seems to be the anxiety is causes. In fact HPV screening is a great technology which enables the close monitoring of those who test positive and there is much evidence to show that it significantly reduce the risk of cervical cancer.

One of my mistakes was to underestimate how long HPV can persist in the body before it may cause problems. I didn’t have the benefit of HPV screening in 2007, age 50y, and misguidedly decided to stop attending for smear tests partly because I had a long history of normal smear results and hadn’t had any new sexual partners for over 20 years. 10 years later I ended up with a diagnosis of stage 2 cervical cancer - see my back story.

Hope this helps a bit?


I have been in a monogamous marriage for 18 years and unfortunately got hpv related cervical cancer. Neither one of us has cheated.

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Thanks for sharing girls, It is ridiculous that I seem more concerned about fidelity rather than the fact I could end up getting cancer. I don’t think the doctors are too concerned as they have told me just to get another smear in 12 months. Did this happen to you?

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I wish. I.had chemotherapie and radiation:)

My cervical screening days pre-date HPV primary screening; if abnormal cells were detected then I think at some point HPV testing was used to determine priority patients. So my smear tests were first checked for abnormal cells; no abnormal cells were ever found in my samples so I never had an HPV test and had to wait 3 years (5 years after age 50y) before I was offered another test. I think HPV primary screening, although not perfect, is a great improvement on how things used to be.

Hi, i could have literally written this post myself. I have today received a letter back re my smear test saying I have HPV and am now freaking out about all sorts. :O(

This is exactly my experience… and my first thought was this also… yes crazy in this situation we still worry about these things first… but I done some research and this could be the case or could not be the case… it can live dormant for years, I had a negative 4 years ago and now a positive last month…I have to go for a biopsy of the cervix and the womb… a have another smear next year to see if my body has cleared it up… what happens if your body hasn’t cleared it?

I had abnormal smear result 2013 CIN3 cells and HPV
Several lots of treatment and given the all clear in 2015. Have been having yearly smear tests since then which I think is usual after treatment. My yearly smear tests were normal until last years results which was low grade abnormal cells with HPV.
Monogamous marriage means nothing when it comes to HPV

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Hi LizzieM

So true that ‘monogamous marriage means nothing when it comes to HPV’.

I stopped going for smear tests when I was 50y for a range of reasons. One of those reasons was that I’d had no new sexual partners for over 20 years and I clearly remember thinking that ‘if I was going to get a problem it would have shown up by now’ BIG mistake!

Since my cc diagnosis I’ve spoken to many (100s) women about cervical screening and quite a few of the older women are under the impression that they don’t need smear tests any more either because of long term monogamy or celibacy. I then treat them to a run down of my story - I’ve managed to get some back on track but a few refuse to hear me.

Just keep going for the check ups :slightly_smiling_face: