Genital warts, also known as condylomata acuminata, are little, fleshy, pinkish-white cauliflower-shaped growths that can result from an infection by the human papillomavirus (HPV). It’s among the most common sexually transmitted infections. There are a number of strains of HPV that can infect the genitalia, mouth and lots of women and men.
Genital warts are caused by the human papilloma virus.
There are more than 100 kinds of HPV, one third of which are spread through sexual contact.
How Many People Have Genital Warts?
HPV is one of the most frequent sexually transmitted diseases. As stated by the Department of Health and Human Services, it is estimated that there are 5.5 million new cases of HPV from the US each year. At least 24 million Americans are infected.
What They Look Like
Genital warts are small, fleshy, pinkish-white cauliflower-shaped growths. Men infected with HPV do not get the warts as frequently as women do. When they do, the warts usually appear on the tip of their penis, but might also appear on the shaft. Warts can also appear on the scrotum or around the anus (warts can spread to the area around the anus without anal sex as a cause). Sometimes genital warts can be viewed around and inside the mouth and in the throat of those who have had oral sex with an infected individual.
Could Have HPV But Not Have Genital Warts?
Yes. The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) has said that nearly half of those infected with HPV had no obvious symptoms. Just because you do not have obvious symptoms doesn’t necessarily mean that you can’t infect others. As soon as you become infected, it may take up to three months for your genital warts to look.
Not many warts are obvious to the naked eye. The physician or health employee may employ a feeble vinegar-like solution that triggers any warts to turn white. An internal examination of the anus could be carried out to check for hidden warts. If you think you’ve been connected with HPV, even in the event that you don’t have any warts, then see a physician who will be able to advise you on treatment.
Unfortunately, like most viruses, there’s absolutely no treatment that will get rid of the HPV virus . You will find HPV vaccines that are approved for girls and boys ages 9 to 26 that can help stop disease.
Genital warts can be treated, but they may reappear at a later stage. Treatment for genital warts is dependent upon size and location. Treatment options include:
- Imiquimod, an immune response cream applied to the infected region.
- 20 percent podophyllin anti-mitotic remedy applied to the infected area and washed off later.
- 0.5% podofilox solution applied to the contaminated region.
- 5 percent 5-fluorouracil cream.
- Trichloroacetic acid (TCA).
The treatments shouldn’t be painful, but when they are, consult your doctor or health adviser.
If your spouse is pregnant, then the podophyllin or even 5-fluorouracil treatments should not be used.
Small warts can be surgically treated by laser, cryosurgery (freezing off them ) or electrocautery (burning off them ).
The anti inflammatory drug alpha-interferon can also be used and can be injected directly into the wartsnonetheless, the medication is very expensive and seems to have little effect on preventing recurrence of the warts. You will need more than 1 kind of treatment to make the warts go away indefinitely.
How Do I Prevent HPV, Genital Warts or Infecting Others?
You will find HPV vaccines which are approved for boys and girls ages 9 to 26 that can help prevent infection. By age 26 and later, most people have come in contact with the HPV virus, and thus the vaccine is not helpful.
Preventing all direct contact with the virus can avoid infection.
As previously mentioned, there’s no treatment currently available for the HPV virus itself. The genital warts, a symptom of the disease, do react to treatment, but they are able to reoccur. Treatment for genital warts should be hunted and performed prior to having sexual contact.
Could Condoms Prevent Genital Wart Infection?
A condom can provide some protection as long as it covers the region affected by warts. Additionally, it has been indicated that condoms covering the affected area will help lower the risks of cervical cancer linked to HPV.
Good hygiene is vital. Keep your genitals clean and sterile and don’t use scented soaps and bath oils, as these can irritate the warts. If your partner uses vaginal deodorants she must know this also may be an afterthought.
It is estimated that 99 percent of cervical cancers are caused by HPV. Some kinds of HPV can also cause penis and anal cancer, as well as vulvar cancer.
If your spouse has abnormal cervical cells detected in a PAP test, it’s necessary that she have regular pelvic examinations and additional PAP tests so that any cancer can be treated as rapidly as possible. (Early detection of cancer increases cure rates).