Make Hers a Double (Stranded)! by Pat Conrad MD


The South Koreans I suspect have now achieved parity with the U.S.A. in an important field, the ability to sensationalize the bleeding obvious.

According to the National Journal of Epidemiology & Infection, the National Cancer Center in Korea has discovered that consuming alcohol may lead to more persistent HPV in women. With a sample study of over 9,000 women, researchers found that current drinkers were nearly three times more likely than non-drinkers to test positive for HPV; that women who’d been drinking for five years doubled their risk of persistent HPV; that the likelihood of someone having persistent HPV increased with the number of drinks per sitting.

Researchers postulated (1) that alcohol could cause folate deficiency, which could potentially alter your DNA, a known precursor to cancer; second, they noted that nearly 10 percent of the drinkers in the study were smokers, and (2) tobacco might suppress the immune system, making it harder for the body to fight off the HPV virus.

Paging Dr. Occam! How about this for a theory: exposure to multiple viral strains increases the likelihood of mutation, increasing the chances for varied effects of said virus, and increased mutations in targeted DNA. The virus in question is transmitted sexually. Alcohol increases the chances of gettin’ busy with multiple partners, leading to an increased chance of exposing/being exposed to multiple strains of sexually transmitted, cancer-encouraging viruses.

In fairness to the researchers, maybe they screened for this. There was a standard sounding statement that “multinomial logistic analysis was performed to estimate multivariate-adjusted odds ratios (OR)”, but nowhere in the abstracts I found did it address average number of sexual partners per participant.

Am I off base here, or are we staring the obvious in the face?

Douglas Farrago MD

Douglas Farrago MD is a full-time practicing family doc in Forest, Va. He started Forest Direct Primary Care where he takes no insurance and bills patients a monthly fee. He is board certified in the specialty of Family Practice. He is the inventor of a product called the Knee Saver which is currently in the Baseball Hall of Fame. The Knee Saver and its knock-offs are worn by many major league baseball catchers. He is also the inventor of the CryoHelmet used by athletes for head injuries as well as migraine sufferers. Dr. Farrago is the author of four books, two of which are the top two most popular DPC books. From 2001 – 2011, Dr. Farrago was the editor and creator of the Placebo Journal which ran for 10 full years. Described as the Mad Magazine for doctors, he and the Placebo Journal were featured in the Washington Post, US News and World Report, the AP, and the NY Times. Dr. Farrago is also the editor of the blog Authentic Medicine which was born out of concern about where the direction of healthcare is heading and the belief that the wrong people are in charge. This blog has been going daily for more than 15 years Article about Dr. Farrago in Doximity Email Dr. Farrago – [email protected] 

  1 comment for “Make Hers a Double (Stranded)! by Pat Conrad MD

  1. Lady Madonna Lactans
    October 8, 2014 at 1:21 pm

    Well, yeah. Drinking excessively leads to bad decisions, like having sex with multiple partners who hang out in bars. Smoking cigarettes leads to cotinine (a breakdown product of nicotine) in the cervix, encouraging growth of HPV. Immune systems are wonderful things but why challenge them with dozens of new strains of HPV every Saturday night?

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