Genital warts are growths or bumps that appear: Genital warts is one of the most common sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). Most people will be exposed to a form of HPV at some point in their lives. Not everyone will become infected or develop symptoms.
Genital warts are caused by the
(HPV). There are many different types of HPV. Only a few types are thought to cause genital warts.
Many types of HPV are associated with harmless
found on the fingers or feet.
Certain types of HPV may cause
. Less commonly, certain strains of HPV can cause cancers of the vulva, anus, or penis.
HPV is easily spread during oral, genital, or anal sex with an infected partner. Most people who have sex with an infected partner will also develop genital warts.
Warts can also be spread to an infant during delivery if the mother has genital warts.
Genital warts are growths or bumps that appear:
- On the vulva
- In or around the vagina or anus
- On the cervix
- On the penis, scrotum, groin, or thigh
- Rarely, in the mouth or throat
Genital Warts Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.
Genital warts is one of the most common
sexually transmitted diseases
Most people will be exposed to a form of HPV at some point in their lives. Not everyone will become infected or develop symptoms.
Genital warts may be diagnosed by:
The only way to completely prevent HPV from spreading is to avoid physical contact with infected partners.
Latex condoms may help reduce the spread of HPV infection and genital warts. Condoms are not 100% effective because they do not cover the entire genital area.
Other ways to help prevent infection include:
- Abstain from sex
- Have a monogamous relationship
- Get regular check-ups for STDs
Factors that may increase your risk for HPV and genital warts include:
- Multiple sexual partners
- First male sexual partner has had two or more previous sexual partners (for women)
- Having a weakened immune system
- Sex at an early age
- Skin-to-skin contact with an infected partner
- Previous history of genital warts or other STDs
Genital warts often look like fleshy, raised growths. They can have a cauliflower shape, and often appear in clusters. Some warts may be flat. The warts may not be easy to see with the unaided eye. Warts can take several weeks or months to appear after the infection.
In women, warts may be found in the following areas:
- Vulva or vagina
- Inside or around the vagina or anus
In men, warts are less common. If present, they are usually found in these areas:
- Tip or shaft of the penis
- Around the anus
While warts do not usually cause symptoms, the following may occur:
Treatment help the symptoms, but does not cure the virus. The virus stays in your body. This means the warts may recur.
Your treatment depends on the size and location of the warts. Not all warts need to be treated. If left untreated, some may go away on their own, but others may stay. Some warts may also get larger or spread.