Adults suffer from HPV too

08/10/2014 10:08 AM

08/11/2014 12:48 PM

Re "How to save teenagers from misery and death" (Forum, Aug. 10): I applaud The Bee's editorial board for its Aug. 10 article. However, I'd have named it "How to save teenagers and adults from misery and death."

At the age of 64, a dime-sized growth was discovered at the base of my throat. Subsequent tests showed it to be Stage 3 HPV oropharyngeal cancer. The cause: My body was unable to rid itself of the HPV virus I contracted decades ago, and it lay dormant until turning cancerous in my 60s.

After months of daily radiation and chemotherapy, it's now in remission. The treatment was brutal, but I'm one of the lucky ones. Had it gone to stage 4, I'd not be writing this today.

I urge parents of all young adults to visit "HPV Oral Cancer Facts" at the Oral Cancer Foundation's website. -- Guy Petersen, Placerville

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