By: Connie Masak, APNP

Genital Warts are soft, fleshy, small growths on the skin caused by infection with the human papilloma virus (HPV). They may be found around the vagina, the area around the anus, the penis, and on the scrotum.

• STI caused by the human papilloma virus
• Spread by skin-to-skin contact
• More contagious and easily spread than other warts
• Genital warts can be spread to the throat and vocal cords through oral-genital sex

HPV: Many types
• Some types cause genital warts
• Some types cause warts on other parts of the body
• Some types cause cancer of the cervix, vagina or vulva
• HPV can cause cancer of the penis
• HPV can cause cancer of the anus
• HPV can cause oral cancers

• warts usually first appear 1 – 6 months after contact with an infected person
• You can have HPV and not see any warts
• You may have many warts or just 1 wart
• Small flesh-colored, grayish-white or pinkish-white growths
• Itching

• Visual diagnosis of external warts
• Pap test for HPV (usually not visualized without a scope)

• Usually done in the providers office
• Topical acid solution to destroy the wart
• If cervical may need to remove the warts with LEEP procedure, more frequent pap follow up

Special consideration for pregnant women:
• It is rare for genital warts to affect the baby in utero
• You may get more warts during pregnancy
• You may need a C-section if the warts are so large that it might affect the delivery of the baby
• It is rare for the baby to get warts after delivery

Preventing the spread of HPV:
• Abstinence
• HPV vaccine is most effective if given before a young man/woman has sex for the first time
• Routine pap screening
• Condom use
• Avoid sexual contact until the warts are completely resolved
• Stop smoking. Studies show that smoking increases the risks and problems related to HPV infection

As we observe STD Awareness Month, we encourage everyone to take proactive steps toward prioritizing their sexual health. If you have concerns about STDs or are due for testing, we invite you to schedule an appointment with Women’s Health Specialists. Our compassionate and knowledgeable providers can offer guidance, support, and testing options to help ensure your sexual health and well-being. Don’t wait – take charge of your health today. Schedule your appointment today! Schedule on our website or call us at (920) 749-4000.