What Increases Your Risk
Most cervical cell changes that cause an abnormal Pap test are the result of sexual transmission of HPV disease. High-risk sexual behaviors by you or your partner at some time, possibly even many years ago, may lead to HPV infection. High-risk sexual behaviors increase your risk of infections and sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).
High-risk sexual behaviors include:
- Starting sexual intercourse at an early age (before age 18).
- Having sex without using a condom, which increases your risk of being infected with:
- Having multiple sex partners in a lifetime.
- Having sexual intercourse with someone who has had multiple sex partners.
Other risk factors that may also play a role in increasing your risk for cervical cell changes include:
If you have had one abnormal Pap test result, you may be at higher risk for having another abnormal Pap test in the future.