HPV – The Lecture!

Human Papilloma Virus. Yeah. Those of you who read this blog for the fitness pics, just scroll down and ignore this first one…


Pretty, huh? Well, Nate (gay doctor friend and long-term Man.Power gym freak) decided to offer us all at Chad’s gym ‘the facts’ about indulging in gay sex. Now, in our special group of 10, we don’t do ‘anal’ outside of that group, but we have been fairly relaxed about oral with assorted guys. Nate’s main message was ‘don’t be scared, but think what you are doing.’ Apparently 25% of us have HPV at any one time, and almost everyone’s immune system just deals with it in a few months with no symptoms. It spreads by skin contact (i.e. genital contact) and leads potentially to cervical cancer in women and to anal cancer in gay men. They offer injections to women, and allow the herd effect to apply to reduce infections in men. More immediately obvious symptoms are genital warts and white puffy patches. Those indulging in oral sex also run a risk of throat cancer – a particularly nasty one affective the lymph nodes at the back of the throat and not easy to detect in its early stages. Persistant sore throats, hoarse voice, difficulty in swallowing and swellings in the neck are signs. That’s the bad news.

The good news is that only 3 in 10,000 throat cancers are associated with oral sex, far, far, fewer than with smoking, for example. Michael Douglas, whose recent revelations seem to have awoken attention to HPV, seems unfortunately to be one of the three. Apparently it took nine months to find out the cause of his throat problem.

I found out that British doctors, through their British Medical Council, are now recommending the course of injections to the gay community as well, it having previously been thought that they were only effective against the cancers in the anal and cervical areas. This, however, has yet to be accepted, although you can buy the course of three injections from local medics for about $600 or equivalent. It’s called either Garasil or Silgard according to which part of the world you live in.

And what are we going to do, since there isn’t any obviously useful test for a malignant effect when one in four of the entire population carries the virus anyway? Well, think hard a bit, I suppose, about what we do outside of our group and who we do it with. Gay guys have for some time been advised to use a condom when indulging in oral activity, but (I ask you) the thought of sucking a rubber sheath… a regular e-mail correspondent from the southern UK informs me that he read of a guy who had an eight-hour operation to replace part of his tongue. As he puts it, “heaven knows what with…”

Special OfferAnd so to more cheerful matters. Said correspondent has read all three of my books and seemed to like them. He would probably recommend them if asked! So I just mention here that they do NOT explore issues like HIV, HPV etc but rather the joys of being in a gay relationship, gay sport and performance (acrobatics rather than football, I fear) and also a taste of adventure which was unwelcome (to us) at the time but nonetheless makes a good story.

And, as we all seem to appreciate the good side of gay life and enjoy endorsing the fitness programmes which lead to great physical development, here goes: first, two guys hard at work with their bars…



Next, why not do pull-ups (and crazy swings) in your underwear? It’s a free country (well, sort of…):


Some guys use two bars and prepare them well…


Let’s admire the result of some hard work on the bars (and the rest of the weights equipment!):



Why settle for ONE guy?


You can use your gym equipment in unconventional ways to improve your musculature…





kitchen 2

Finally today, back in the gym…


I think that’s a reasonably inspirational collection for this post. Hit the weights, guys…

Here’s the book collection, too, for when you’re chillin’ after the workout…

Loving the Boy: ISBN 978-1-907732-30-0

The Power of Love: ISBN 978-1-907732-41-6

Against All Odds: ISBN 978-1-908645-35-7

About tonycavanagh

Born Northampton UK; school Oxford UK and Oak Ridge Tennessee, where I met my wonderful partner Dave, also from UK. Oak Ridge is our main training base for acrobatics and circus stuff, but we also established a base in Wales (UK) to serve us when we are working in Europe. Our 'story', of finding gay love, learning the acrobatics trade and then of how we got shot at during our show (and worse was to follow - just to prove that the risks of being an acrobat are not always the most obvious ones!) are now available in my three books 'Loving the Boy', 'The Power of Love' and 'Against All Odds'. Links available on most blog posts. Actually, waiting for the imminent arrival of the first printed copies was far scarier than anything we do in performance. A fourth book - not about us but exploring the sadness of a gay Native American boy denied his true identity - is currently with an agent for evaluation. watch for 'Let The Future Find Me' in due time. And now to book five... another boy, another quest... seems its always boys...
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2 Responses to HPV – The Lecture!

  1. Steve says:

    Who/what is that collection of 25 muscle guys? That much muscle in one place at one time and it does not seem to be a bodybuilding contest. Wow…..super WOW

    • tonycavanagh says:

      It’s clearly the regulars from the gym which is at the top of the steps, but I don’t know where. Watch for an even bigger group coming up shortly in a new post…

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