A veneral disease which is characterized by growth and swelling in and around the genital area, genital warts also known as condyloma is one of the most common sexually transmitted diseases that affects both men and women.
These warts are caused by certain strains of human papillomavirus (HPV) particularly type 6 and 11 strains. While men are affected by genital warts around the scrotum, penis, thighs, anus and urethra, women suffer from this problem in the anal area, vagina and cervix.
Symptoms of Genital Warts
The warts appear as small, colorless or grayish bumps which are usually clustered together in a cauliflower shape. The appearance of these warts is often accompanied by extreme itching, pain, burning sensation and soreness in the affected part. People suffering from this problem may feel pain and burning during urination and pain and even bleeding during and after intercourse.
Genital warts are extremely contagious as they are passed on by genital contact or passing of genital fluids. Having unprotected sex or sex with multiple partners increases the risk of contacting this disease. Sometimes pregnant women suffering from this problem can pass on the disease to the baby during childbirth. In this case the baby may develop throat warts that may need surgical intervention to prevent airway obstruction.
Although it is not always the case but HPV infection is often connected to genital cancer as well. To avoid these problems it is essential to diagnose and treat genital warts as soon as possible.
Treatment for Genital Warts
To diagnose the disease the doctor may conduct pap tests and HPV tests. If a person is diagnosed with genital warts then there are several treatment measures that the doctor can opt for. Along with the number of warts, the doctor has to take into account the location and appearance of the warts before providing appropriate treatment for removing the warts.
The doctor may recommend certain topical medications that can heal and remove the warts. Aldara and Podofilox are certain topical medications that can help in removing the warts in a few days. Along with this the doctor can also opt for a chemical treatment using Trichloroacetic acid. Remember that these medications are to be used under the guidance of a doctor only. Over the counter creams and medications cannot remove warts.
For large warts that cannot be suppressed by medications the doctor may need to use certain surgical methods for removal of the warts. Cryotherapy is a method wherein the warts are frozen using liquid nitrogen. The affected area is then covered with blisters and as the skin heals these blisters slough off giving way to new skin.
In addition to this, surgical excision which involves cutting off the warts with special tools and electrocautery which involves passing an electric current to remove the warts can be used as well. Laser treatments for wart removal are used in rare cases as well but these treatments are extremely expensive and usually used only when all the other treatment measures have been used.
It is important to never treat these warts on your own as you can end up doing more damage with home remedies and over the counter drugs. Consult a doctor and try to prevent these warts by having protected sex.