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PurposeHuman papillomavirus (HPV) is the most common sexually transmitted virus worldwide. Our purpose was to examine people’s experiences with HPV using narratives posted on a website entitled, Experience Project.MethodWe conducted a content analysis of 127 HPV narratives to identify stigma, emotion-focused and problem-focused coping, and misinformation.ResultsNegative self-image was the most commonly identified type of stigma. There were more instances of problem-focused than emotion-focused coping. Sources of confusion were mostly about HPV treatment and side effects/symptoms.ConclusionsThese findings have implications for how nurses and other health professionals can care for individuals living with HPV. Based on these findings, it would be beneficial for clinics/providers to implement on-line forums where myths about HPV can be debunked and accurate information provided. Both patients and the public need to be better informed about HPV, in order to decrease the negative stigma that can create a mental burden for individuals with HPV.
Journal: Applied Nursing Research - Volume 30, May 2016, Pages 137–141