A year and a half ago, Desperate Housewives star Marcia Cross learned that she had anal cancer. She then learned that it could be linked to her husband’s throat cancer diagnosis through HPV.
79 Million Americans Infected with HPV
HPV is a sexually transmitted disease that can spread even if a person is not exhibiting any symptoms. For some, it can go away on its own. But for others, it can lead to genital warts, or even cancer.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 79 million Americans are infected with some type of HPV.
HPV Can Cause Several Different Cancers
While it is more widely known that HPV can cause cervical cancer, it can also cause cancer of the vulva, vagina, penis, or anus, as well as cancer in the back of the throat. To protect against these, the CDC recommends that children receive the HPV vaccine starting at age 11 or 12.
Cross is finally back in good health, after several rounds of chemotherapy and radiation. She is now speaking out about anal cancer in an effort to encourage others to speak up about their diagnosis and bring awareness.
She has also stated that her 12-year-old daughters are kicking off their summer with a round of HPV vaccines, in an effort to help protect them from the infection that has been linked to so many cancers.