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A cryotherapy ice ball on a vulval wart

Genital warts

Genital warts

Genital warts

Genital warts

Genital warts

Genital warts

Genital warts

Genital warts

Genital warts

Genital warts

Genital warts

Genital warts

Genital warts

Genital warts

Genital warts

Genital warts

Genital warts

Genital warts

Genital warts

Genital warts

Genital warts

Genital warts

Genital warts

Genital warts

Genital warts

Genital warts

Genital warts

Genital warts

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On DermNet NZ

  • Anogenital warts
  • Sexually acquired human papillomavirus

Herpes, Genital Warts, Gonorrhea, STD Symptoms, & Testing

Medically Reviewed by Traci C. Johnson, MD on January 14, 2023

You don’t have to have sex to get an STD. Skin-to-skin contact is enough to spread HPV, the virus family that causes genital warts. Some types cause warts and are usually harmless, but others may lead to cervical or anal cancer. Vaccines can protect against some of the most dangerous types.

Signs: Pink or flesh-colored warts that are raised, flat, or shaped like cauliflower. Often there are no symptoms.

“Crabs” is the common term for lice that set up shop in pubic hair. The term comes from the shape of the tiny parasites, which look very different from head or body lice. The creatures crawl from one person to another during close contact. Pubic lice can be killed with over-the-counter lotions.

Symptoms: Intense itching, tiny eggs attached to pubic hair, or crawling lice.

Scabies is an itchy infestation caused by a tiny mite that burrows into human skin to lay eggs. It is not always an STD, as it can spread through any skin-to-skin contact. But among young adults, the mites are often acquired during sex. Scabies is treated with prescription creams.

Symptoms: Intense itching especially at night and a pimple-like rash. It may take 2-6 weeks for symptoms to appear.

Gonorrhea spreads easily and can lead to infertility in both men and women, if untreated. Antibiotics stop the infection.

Symptoms: Common symptoms are burning during urination and discharge, but often there are no early symptoms. Later, the infection may cause skin rashes or spread to the joints and blood.

In Men: Discharge from the penis, swollen testicles.

In Women: Vaginal discharge, pelvic pain, spotting. Symptoms may be mild and are easily confused with a urinary tract or vaginal infection.

Most people don’t notice the early symptoms of syphilis. The USPSTF recommends screening for syphilis infection in persons who are at increased risk for infection. Without treatment, it can lead to paralysis, blindness, and death. Syphilis can be cured with antibiotics.

Signs and Symptoms: The first sign is usually a firm, round, painless sore on the genitals or anus. The disease spreads through direct contact with this sore. Later there may be a rash on the soles, palms, or other parts of the body (seen here), as well as swollen glands, fever, hair loss, or fatigue. In the late stage, symptoms come from damage to organs such as the heart, brain, liver, nerves, and eyes.

Chlamydia is a common STD that can lead to infertility if left untreated. It clears up quickly with antibiotics. But it often goes unnoticed because symptoms are vague or absent. Chlamydia can also infect the rectum and throat.

Symptoms in Men: Burning and itching at the tip of the penis, discharge, painful urination.

Symptoms in Women: Vaginal itching, discharge that may have an odor, pain during sex, painful urination.

That painful cold sore you get on your lip every now and then? It’s probably caused by a type of herpes virus called HSV-1. This virus is usually not an STD; it spreads easily among household members or through kissing. But it can be spread to the genitals through oral or genital contact with an infected person. Though there is no cure, drugs can shorten or prevent outbreaks.

Signs and Symptoms: Occasional cold sores or “fever blisters” on the lips. Small blister or sores on the genitals are also possible.

Most cases of genital herpes are caused by a virus called HSV-2. It’s highly contagious and can spread through intercourse or direct contact with a herpes sore. As with HSV-1, there is no cure. But antiviral drugs can make outbreaks less frequent and help clear up symptoms more quickly.

Symptoms: Fluid-filled blisters that form painful, crusted sores on the genitals, anus, thighs, or buttocks. Can spread to the lips through oral contact.

Hepatitis B is a stealthy virus that can cause severe liver damage. It spreads through contact with blood and other body fluids. People can be infected through sex, needle sharing, and at birth, as well as by sharing razors and toothbrushes. There is no cure, but drugs can keep the virus in check. There’s also an effective vaccine to prevent hepatitis B.

Symptoms: People may develop nausea, belly pain, dark urine, fatigue, and a yellowing of the skin or eyes with acute infection. Chronic infection can lead to liver cirrhosis and liver cancer. Many people have no symptoms for years.

The HIV virus weakens the body’s defense against infections. HIV spreads through unprotected sex, needle sharing, or being born to an infected mother. It may cause no symptoms for years, so a blood test is the best way to learn your status. Timely treatment is important to help prevent serious illnesses.

Early symptoms of HIV Infection: Many have no symptoms, but some people get temporary flu-like symptoms one to two months after infection: swollen glands (seen here), a fever, headaches, and fatigue. Canker sores in the mouth can occur, too.

Reliable HIV tests can be done in a clinic or at home with the FDA-approved Home Access brand test kit. Anonymous tests use only a number to identify you. One limitation is the “window period” of up to six months after exposure to HIV when these antibody tests sometimes do not find the virus. You can pass HIV to others during that time.

If You Suspect HIV/AIDS: If you’ve been exposed to HIV, starting medications immediately can help prevent infection. If you have the virus, treatments can help prevent HIV from turning into AIDS.

While there is no cure for HIV, there are medications that can suppress the amount of virus multiplying inside the body. People take a combination of antiviral drugs in hopes of preventing the infection from advancing to AIDS. Additional treatments can help prevent or fight off serious infections, if the immune system has weakened.

Trichomoniasis is caused by a parasite that spreads during sexual contact. It can be cured with prescription drugs.

Signs and Symptoms in Men: Most men have no obvious symptoms. Some develop a mild discharge or slight burning during urination.

Signs and Symptoms in Women: Women may develop a yellow-green discharge with a strong odor, vaginal itching, or pain during sex or urination. Symptoms usually begin five to 28 days after acquiring the parasite.

Chancroid is a bacterial STD that is common in Africa and Asia but rare in the U.S. It causes genital sores that can spread the bacteria from one person to another. Antibiotics can cure the infection.

Symptoms in Men: Painful bumps on the penis that may develop into pus-filled open sores, pain in the genitals and groin.
Symptoms in Women: Painful bumps in the genital area that can develop into open sores, swollen lymph nodes in the groin.

LGV is caused by a type of chlamydia that is usually rare in the U.S. But it’s becoming more common in men who have sex with men. Like other forms of chlamydia, it can be cured with antibiotics.

Symptoms: Open sores on the genitals or anus, headache, fever, fatigue, and swollen lymph glands in the groin (seen here). If acquired through anal sex, LGV may cause rectal bleeding or discharge.

Not an STD itself, pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) is a serious complication of untreated STDs, especially chlamydia and gonorrhea. It happens when bacteria spread to infect the uterus and other female reproductive organs. Prompt treatment is essential to prevent damage to a woman’s fertility.

Signs and Symptoms: Lower abdominal pain, fever, unusual discharge, painful intercourse, painful urination, and spotting. However, there are often no warning signs.

Anyone who is sexually active is at risk for an STD, regardless of gender, race, social class, or sexual orientation. That said, teenagers and young adults acquire STDs more easily than older people. By age 25, half of sexually active adults get an STD. Having multiple sex partners also raises the risk. The CDC has noted that some STDs are on the rise in men who have sex with men, including syphilis and LGV.

Yes, they can. Many STDs spread through any type of sexual activity, including skin-to-skin contact and oral sex. This is especially true of STDs that produce genital lesions or sores.

The best ways to avoid getting an STD are to abstain from any sexual contact and be in a monogamous, long-term relationship with an uninfected partner. To reduce the odds of getting STDs:

  • Ask your partner if they have an STD.
  • Ask partners to be tested before sexual activity.
  • Use condoms.
  • Avoid sexual activity if your partner has signs of an STD.
  • Be aware of symptoms and get regular checkups with your health care provider.


While condoms are effective in preventing the spread of some STDs, they are not perfect. Condoms are better at protecting against gonorrhea, chlamydia, HIV, and trichomoniasis. But they offer less protection against herpes, syphilis, and genital warts. These infections can spread through contact with skin lesions that are not covered by a condom. Finally, condoms offer virtually no protection against crabs and scabies.

If you think you have an STD, tell your partner(s) as soon as possible. You may be able to spread the infection even if you have already begun treatment or are using condoms. With some STDs, doctors recommend treating both partners at the same time. This may be a difficult conversation. Some people find it helpful to write a script ahead of time. Be sure to let your partner ask questions and express their feelings.

It is important for pregnant women to be checked for STDs. They can cause women to go into labor too early and may complicate delivery. Many STDs can be passed from mother to baby during pregnancy, childbirth, or after the baby is born. STDs’ effects on babies can include stillbirth, low birth weight, neurologic problems, blindness, liver disease, and serious infection. But there are treatments to minimize these risks. Treatment during pregnancy can cure some STDs and lower the risk of passing the infection to your baby. 

Most STD treatments do not protect you from getting the same infection again. A course of drugs may cure gonorrhea, syphilis, chlamydia or trichomoniasis, but a new exposure can start a new infection. If your partner is not treated, you can continue to pass infections back and forth. And if you’re not taking the right precautions to protect yourself, you can be re-infected quickly or even pick up a second STD.  


1)    Science Source, Dr P. Marazzi, Dr. Harout Tanielian, Biophoto Associates /  Photo Researchers Inc.
2)    London Scientific Films
3)    Dr. P. Marazzi / Photo Researchers, Inc.
4)    Juergen Berger / Photo Researchers, Interactive Medical Media LLC , Fitzpatrick’s Color Atlas & Synopsis of Clinical Dermatology
5)    Science Source/Photo Researchers, Fitzpatrick’s Color Atlas & Synopsis of Clinical Dermatology
6)    BSIP/Photo Researchers Inc
7)    Interactive Medical Media LLC
8)    Interactive Medical Media LLC, Fitzpatrick’s Color Atlas & Synopsis of Clinical Dermatology, Dr. Harold Fisher/Visuals Unlimited
9)    Eye of Science/Photo Researchers Inc
10)    Dr. M.A. Ansary / Photo Researchers, Inc., Science Source, Fitzpatrick’s Color Atlas & Synopsis of Clinical Dermatology
11)    Bildagentur RM/Tips Italia
12)    Bruce Forester/Photographer’s Choice
13)    IMA / Photo Researchers Inc
14)    Dr. M.A. Ansary / Photo Researchers, Inc., David M. Phillips / Photo Researchers, Inc, Fitzpatrick’s Color Atlas & Synopsis of Clinical Dermatolog
15)    Dr. M.A. Ansary / Photo Researchers, Inc.
16)    Judith Glick / Phototake
17)    Clarissa Leahy/Photographer’s Choice
18)    Christoph Martin/Lifesize
19)    George Diebold/Photographer’s Choice
20)    Michael Winokur/Workbook Stock
21)    John Lamb/Stone
22)    UHB Trust/Stone
23)    Alan Powdrill/Stone


American Social Health Association.
American Social Health Association’s National Herpes Resource Center.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention web site.
FDA web site.
Fleming, et al. The New England Journal of Medicine, Oct. 16, 1997.
March of Dimes web site.
Merck Manual, 17th edition.
National HIV Testing Resources.
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.
National Institutes of Health.
The Nemours Foundation’s Kids Health web site.
U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services.

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What is genital warts in women and men – how to treat?

Genital warts is a pathological skin lesion with growths that look like microscopic cauliflowers. The disease most often affects the skin in the genital area, perineum and anus. Single or multiple neoplasms can be quite large and cause a lot of inconvenience to a person.

Most patients with genital warts experience psychological discomfort associated with a decrease in body aesthetics. But there are also people for whom the removal of genital warts is a matter of maintaining health. After all, large warts are often injured by underwear, caught when walking, during intimacy. They begin to bleed, ulcerate, which is fraught with secondary infection. Condylomatosis is also a contagious disease transmitted during close contact. Therefore, the question “Do I need to remove genital warts?” dermatologists unanimously give a positive answer.

If you are interested in the treatment of anogenital formations in Odessa, we invite you to sign up for a doctor’s consultation at the Lazersvit Mole Diagnostic Center.

As a specialized clinic, we offer comprehensive diagnosis and treatment of viral genital warts with modern methods. Our doctors will help you get rid of the manifestations of the disease, as well as offer effective methods of prevention. We guarantee confidentiality, professionalism and a high level of service.

Genital warts: causes

The cause of intimate warts is the human papillomavirus. These are types of low oncological risk, but the risk of developing skin cancer in a small percentage of cases is present.

Infection occurs through intimate contact, that is, HPV is transmitted through sexual contact or through close bodily contact without direct sexual intercourse. There have also been cases when the disease was transmitted through personal hygiene items – a towel, a washcloth.

It is noteworthy that infection does not always occur with a single contact. But the longer the time of intimacy, the higher the chance of infection. A prerequisite for the penetration of the virus into the body are skin microtrauma. It is through defects in the skin and mucous membranes that “transmission” occurs.

It is important that the use of a condom during intercourse prevents infection with sexually transmitted diseases. But against HPV, latex protection is powerless, since the rubber product does not cover all the contact areas of intimate areas during intercourse.

Clinical course

Once in the body, HPV can remain inactive for a long time. In this case, a person is a carrier, but he himself does not show symptoms of the disease.

The activity of the virus is directly related to the state of human immunity. With good internal protection, the incubation period can take several years. As soon as a person gets sick, finds himself in a state of prolonged emotional discomfort or prolonged physical exertion, the virus is activated and manifests itself in chaotic cell division. So in intimate areas, genital warts appear.

Skin pathology can appear not only directly at the site of infection. The disease involves nearby areas – the vulva in women, the head of the penis and groin in men, the perineum, anus.

The clinical picture of the disease is directly related to the immune system of a particular person. The weaker the body’s defenses, the more free HPV feels. In advanced cases, the growths cover the entire anal area, for example, they can be involved in pathological processes in women not only the large and small labia, but also the vagina. In men, the disease moves from the perianal region to the rectum.

Unfortunately, it is impossible to obtain permanent immunity from the disease or cure HPV forever. And although modern medicine offers HPV vaccines today, such a measure is not a 100% guarantee of protection against infection.

Genital warts in women: symptoms

As already mentioned, skin areas affected by genital warts look extremely unattractive. Growths appear on the skin of the genital organs. This causes emotional discomfort. With active growth, intimate warts can make it difficult to carry out hygiene procedures, cause itching, and bleed. Some tumors grow so large that they cause difficulty urinating. That is why it is mandatory to remove genital warts when they are detected.

It is very important that during pregnancy the virus can pass from mother to child. Such cases are infrequent, but the risks are present. Therefore, pregnant women are strongly advised to carefully monitor the condition of the skin, so that at the first signs of pathology, contact a specialist.

Genital warts in men: symptoms

Most often, in men, HPV lesions become several parts of the body at once. Colonies of warts are diagnosed on the penis, scrotum, anus. As a rule, these are not single growths, but numerous formations that are located very close to each other. The growths on the rectum can cause problems with bowel movements.

How is the diagnosis carried out?

Genital warts of the genitals, perineum and anus are easily diagnosed by a specialist during a visual examination. If the doctor has noticed signs of degeneration of formations or the condition of the skin is in doubt, he can use a dermatoscope or resort to laboratory tests of skin samples to clarify the diagnosis.

To determine the extent of damage to internal zones, specialists use instrumental or hardware techniques. Although the virus that rewards a carrier with genital warts rarely has oncogenic potential, women are offered cytology of tissue samples from the cervix. This allows you to identify the type of HPV.

How to treat genital warts?

Many people, embarrassed by the location of warts, do not go to a specialized institution, but try to get rid of the problem with folk remedies at home. They get “recipes” for how to remove genital warts from dubious sources.

The use of aggressive ointments and liquid products containing celandine juice is highly likely not to give the desired result. But a skin burn to a person is guaranteed. And, importantly, you can only deal with external warts on your own. If the location of genital warts is internal, then it is impossible to get rid of them without the use of special equipment, without risking health and even life.

In the clinic, the treatment of genital warts in men and women involves the removal of growths with a laser, the appointment of tablets to the patient that increase immunity and reduce the activity of the virus. And although there is no cure for HPV, an integrated approach to the fight against the disease helps to achieve stable long-term remission.

Warts are removed on an outpatient basis. Long-term rehabilitation after microsurgery is not required. It is enough to undergo antiviral and immunostimulating treatment at home to suppress the activity of the virus.

Treatment of genital warts in “Lazersvit”

In the specialized clinic “Lazersvit” treatment of genital warts in women and men takes place in comfortable conditions in accordance with international protocols. In his work, the dermatologist uses modern diagnostic and surgical equipment. Extensive experience of specialists allows to achieve excellent results. We offer to compare before and after photos from our gallery to make sure of this.

For more information and to make an appointment with a doctor, call. We will be happy to answer your questions.

How to treat genital warts in men

Neoplasms in intimate places grow in tens of millions of people around the world. According to doctors, up to 13% of the world’s population is infected.

Genital warts affect both men and women. They appear due to the human papillomavirus or HPV, which consists of more than 130 types.

Not all of them attack the genitals. Approximately 35 types of HPV give rise to intimate warts. The most active are the 6th and 11th types. These viruses cause up to 90% of all neoplasms on the genitals.

HPV penetrates the skin through sexual contact, although this is not a prerequisite – sometimes the carrier transmits the virus during touching. Especially easily it slips into the body where the skin is damaged. Then warts grow around the wound. But even whole skin does not greatly prevent the virus from getting into the body and gaining a foothold in it.

HPV does not attack immediately. It hibernates from several months to two years. Then the virus wakes up and transforms skin cells. Its upper layer in this area grows and turns into genital warts or other neoplasms. In about four months.

Genital warts colonize the genitals, usually in people aged 20 to 39 years. Teenagers are less likely to.

The risk of HPV infection is affected by:

  • Number of sexual partners
  • Smoking
  • Weakened immunity
  • Cases of chlamydia or gonorrhea

Genital warts in men does not grow in everyone, even with several risk factors. You can thank your body for this.

Yes, many people are infected with the human papillomavirus, but a strong immune system stops any outrages from HPV. In healthy people, growths rarely appear.

Therefore, the first line of defense against viral neoplasms is not expensive medicines or modern surgeries, but strong immunity.

But if condylomas nevertheless settled on the genitals, it is important to quickly identify them.

Portraits of viral invaders. What genital warts look like in men

In most patients, genital warts appear immediately in large numbers. Single outgrowths are rare.

Such neoplasms pop up on the skin of men in several places:

  • Penis
  • Scrotum
  • Anus
  • Oral cavity

Some warts are invisible. They are so small that even by touch they are difficult to detect.

What do these warts look like?

Raised flesh-colored neoplasms up to five millimeters in diameter. Some are flat and wide. Others are similar in shape to cauliflower.

The number of genital warts depends on the patient’s immune status. In a weakened body, the virus actively develops. Therefore, next to the first growth, others often appear, and together they form a large tumor.

In many cases, doctors diagnose genital warts in men on the head of the penis and other intimate places already during the examination. Women are a little more difficult. A colposcopy may be needed to check for growths in the vagina.

Getting a diagnosis is just the beginning. Identifying warts is much easier than getting rid of them.

Looking for a cure. How to cure genital warts in men

Unfortunately, no way. Yes, this is not a mistake – genital neoplasms really cannot be cured, only removed.

What’s the difference?

We have already said that genital warts are caused by the human papillomavirus, which changes skin cells and causes them to grow rapidly. As a result, growths are formed. Just a manifestation of HPV inside the superficial tissues of the body.

So doctors don’t fight the cause of the problem, but the symptoms.

And when people talk about the treatment of genital warts in men, they usually mean the removal of neoplasms.

There are no special agents against the virus. You will have to rely on your body and hope that it will suppress HPV activity. However, he can help a little.

In order to quickly cure genital warts in men, we recommend that you deal with risk factors for the disease. To do this:

  • Limit the number of sexual partners
  • Stop smoking
  • Do not have sex with people who have many lovers

Any measures to strengthen the immune system will also be useful. The stronger the body, the lower the risk of new genital warts.

Warts will not stay on a healthy body. And especially persistent neoplasms can be eliminated using several modern methods.

Methods for the destruction of growths. How to get rid of genital warts in men

Not all patients seek urgent removal of genital warts – quite often, neoplasms do not cause discomfort and are almost invisible. Just a few tiny growths. They don’t even feel.

Should they be removed?

Decide for yourself – although these genital warts do not interfere, they are still contagious and increase the chances of passing the virus to your partner. You can wait until genital warts disappear on their own. But most of these viral neoplasms disappear in only two years, and not all patients want to endure that long.

So let’s get back to the therapy options.

In many cases, doctors first prescribe topical agents – creams and ointments with chemicals that slowly destroy warts.

This treatment does not require surgery. However, there are also disadvantages – these tools are not very effective and usually begin to work only with repeated use. So therapy will continue for a long time. In addition, she has a high risk of recurrence of growths.

Safer operations. They allow you to get rid of genital warts in men in almost all cases. Unfortunately, the guarantee is not 100%.

Basic procedures:

  • Cryotherapy

The doctor freezes the growth with liquid nitrogen. The neoplasm gradually dies off and falls off, and new healthy skin grows under it. Sometimes multiple sessions are needed.

  • Surgical excision

The doctor cuts off genital warts with a scalpel or other instruments. It usually also removes a thin layer of skin around the growths. For complete removal. After the operation, wounds remain, and then scars may appear.

  • Electrocoagulation

The doctor burns the neoplasm with a high-frequency electric current. There is a small wound left. It heals in a few weeks.

  • Laser therapy

The doctor removes warts with a beam of light. This method is well suited for growths that are difficult to eliminate with other methods. The wound from the operation is covered with a crust and heals completely in three weeks.

A word of advice – don’t sign up for surgery right away if you find genital warts.

Better go check it out. It is quite possible that genital warts will disappear without expensive treatment.

However, it is also not worth postponing therapy for a long time – especially when various complications appear that make life with growths difficult. In such cases, you need the help of a doctor.

Complications from genital warts. What happens if warts are not treated?

Neoplasms on the genitals are extremely rarely dangerous to health and life. Usually they just settle on the skin and densely occupy it. Unpleasant, but not fatal.

Only sometimes the growths bleed or hurt. With such problems, patients often immediately turn to the doctor, but asymptomatic warts are ignored.

But what happens if you don’t treat genital warts on the head of the penis or elsewhere?

Sometimes they turn into cancer.

However, do not rush to panic – genital neoplasms in men almost never regenerate. Changes are noticeable by signs:

  • Ulcers
  • Color change
  • Bleeding

If you see these symptoms, immediately go to the doctor for an examination.

In other respects, genital warts are almost harmless, except for their contagiousness. Remember this. And go to the doctor, at least for an examination.

Specialists in viral neoplasms. Which doctor treats warts in men?

To check for suspicious growths, you need to contact a dermatologist. This doctor specializes in skin diseases and growths. Including the genitals.

There is nothing wrong with a doctor’s examination, so do not put off the diagnosis until a later date. The sooner you are diagnosed, the sooner you will understand what to do with intimate warts.

Sometimes it is good to wait.

In other cases, doctors recommend urgent surgery.

Every patient has a different situation.

Now you know which doctor treats genital warts in men and you will be able to be examined in a timely manner before dangerous complications appear. It remains to find a suitable medical center.

Choice of clinic. Where to remove warts in men

How you want to get rid of these annoying genital warts as soon as possible, which prevent you from enjoying the joys of sex.

Surely many men with this problem think so.

And some of them get rid of growths in dubious clinics where operations are performed by inexperienced specialists.

Yes, the cost of removing genital warts in men is low here. But there are also disadvantages. Neoplasms after these procedures often return. And sometimes, instead of one removed genital wart, a whole landing of growths is planted on the skin.