Genital Wart

The genital areas such as the penis, vagina and anus can have a growth known as a genital wart. It is sexually transmitted and is caused by the family of viruses known as the human papillomavirus or HPV. The virus has more than sixty types and some of them don’t cause any symptoms. There are more reported cases of genital wart in men then women. During vaginal or anal sex the genital wart is spread by direct skin contact. If people have HPV they may not show any symptoms until the warts appear. Cervical cancer can result in women if it is left untreated. There are topical creams for treatment and they can also be surgically removed.

What Are The Symptoms?

They typically look like small bumps or a cauliflower appearance and they may have a flesh color. Sometimes the genital wart may be inside the vagina or rectum which will make them difficult to spot. During sexual intercourse you may experience itching, bleeding and pain along with abnormal vaginal discharge. Especially during pregnancy the warts may grow fast and if they are left untreated they can become large enough to actually block the vaginal, rectal or urethral openings.

On the penis they typically appear on the shaft, under the foreskin and in the anus area. In the woman it can be found inside the vagina, on the vulva, in the cervix and the anus. Those who smoke are more at risk of contracting the virus and smoking also makes the treatment take longer. Within weeks after the infection the genital wart will appear and it is typically soft and moist. There may be an odor along with the bleeding, itching and pain. Most of the time the warts are painless, but pain will be experienced once the warts block the entrance to the vagina or anus.

Diagnosis For Genital Wart

The visible warts are the only thing to be revealed during a visual examination. Special procedures are needed to trace the warts that appear on the vaginal area since they are flat. To detect any warts a woman should have a pap smear done at least every six months.

Treatment For Genital Wart

You can treat the HPV virus in your body but it cannot be cured. The treatment for genital wart can take awhile and can also be frustrating since new warts will often appear as soon as old warts disappear or are removed. When the condition is left untreated for a long time then it becomes difficult to get rid of the warts. There are six main treatment options for genital warts.

The warts can be frozen with liquid nitrogen. This is often used in combination with the plant resin Podophyllin, but it needs to be washed off after six hours in order to avoid burning of the skin. You shouldn’t use Podophyllin when you are pregnant since it can harm the fetus.

Another genital wart treatment is Trichloracetic acid or TCA. For positive results you will need several treatments with this drug.

The latest cream available is Aldara. Three times a week you will need to apply it before bedtime. However, this cream also shouldn’t be used during pregnancy.

When the warts are in the vagina area a doctor may recommend laser treatments. Laser treatments is also recommended if other treatments haven’t worked.

Then there is injections of interferon along with Podophyllin creams.

The final option is the surgical removal of the warts which is typically only used when all other treatments have failed or cannot be used.

Precautions For Genital Wart

The virus can still be transmitted to your sexual partner even if you don’t have symptoms of HPV while you are undergoing treatment. When warts are visible in the vagina or penis area you should avoid sexual intercourse. As a rule you should make use of a condom, although any unprotected areas are still at risk. Until all the waters have disappeared you should not stop treatment. The age group of seventeen to thirty-three years is the most common for genital warts. The chances of contracting the virus is as high as sixty percent during a single act of sexual intercourse with an infected person. When you have the herpes virus together with HPV virus you are at a greater risk of contracting cervical cancer. If a child has genital warts it is an indication of sexual abuse. Studies shows that the virus is present in forty percent of sexually active adults.

The risk of contracting the virus is increased with multiple sexual partners, poor personal hygiene, heavy perspiration, anal intercourse or infection with another sexually transmitted disease. It is important to go in for regular medical checkups since the HPV virus can remain latent for a while, especially if you fall into one of the groups mentioned above. The best way to prevent the spread of genital wart is to abstain from sex.

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