All You Need to Know About Genital Warts

By:Bhadra Kamalasanan, Onlymyhealth Editorial Team,Date:Dec 12, 2013

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Genital warts are commonly occuring problem in men and women that get easily transmitted from one person to another. It is very common in women compared with men.
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    All About Genital Warts

    There are over million women who come into contact with the Human Papillomavirus each year. The unfortunate aspect of this is that most women diagnosed with it do not even know that they had been carrying the virus. Learn all about this medical condition that can threaten your fertility and create a ruckus for your medical problem.

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    What are Genital Warts?

    Genital warts are growths on the skin as well as the mucus membranes of the genitals. They may be found on the vulva, penis, cervix, urethra, vagina and in and around the anus. Even though genital warts happen in both men and women they most commonly occur in women.

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    How do Genital Warts Develop?

    Genital warts develop when a person has contracted the human papilloma virus, which exists in over 70 different varieties. There are certain types of the virus that can lead to precancerous changes occurring in the cervix, anal cancer or cervical cancer. Such viruses are referred to as high-risk viruses.

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    How to Prevent Genital Warts

    The only way genital warts can be prevented is by not having sexual contact. Chances of getting an STI or genital warts can be reduced by having a sexual relationship with just one partner who is disease-free or by engaging in any form of sexual contact after checking-up with the doctor. Condoms cannot completely protect men and women from genital warts because the virus can also be present on skin nearby.

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    Signs of Genital Warts

    One of the first signs of genital warts is formation of flesh-coloured spots that are either raised or flat. The growth will look like the top of a cauliflower that is in particular area of the genitals and/or on the skin nearby. The warts may occur on tongue, lips, mouth and throat apart from the genitals themselves.

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    Genital Warts in Women

    In women, genital warts can be easily spot inside the anus or vagina, on the cervix inside the body and outside the anus or vagina or anywhere on the skin nearby. Other symptoms include increased vaginal discharge, dampness in the area around where the wart is located, itching in the genitals and vaginal bleeding while having sex.

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    Genital Warts in Men

    Genital warts in men develop on the scrotum, penis, thighs, and groin area and inside or around the anus. Itching of the genital area is also common among men as much as it is in women. Consulting the doctor at the first sight of these symptoms can treat the problem beforehand.

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    How to Diagnose Genital Warts

    At the doctor’s clinic, you would be required to go through a physical exam. Women would have to go through pelvic examination in which a magnifier is used to check where the warts are located. The doctor may use acetic acid to clearly see where the warts are located. The virus that triggers genital warts may cause abnormal Pap smear results. If you keep getting abnormal results, the best thing to do would be to do more frequent Pap smears.

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    How does it get Treated

    Genital warts do not go away by themselves. They would have to be treated by a doctor. So, make sure that you do not use OTC medicines that are meant for general warts. Treatments used by a doctor may include skin treatment at the clinic, prescription medication that will have to be applied at home for a week. The warts may also be removed with the help of surgery like electro cauterization, cryosurgery, laser therapy and surgical excision.


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