Genital Warts

Table of Contents

In women, the warts occur on the outside and inside of the vagina, on the cervix (the area that leads to the womb), or around the anus (butthole). It is important to note that women can have HPV and never develop genital warts.  In men, genital warts are less common. Men usually carry the HPV virus without having an outbreak of warts. If they are present, they usually are seen on the tip of the penis, on the shaft of the penis, on the testes, or around the anus. Genital warts also can develop in the mouth or throat of a person who has had oral sex with an infected person.

HOW CAN YOU TELL IF YOU HAVE THEM? A doctor or other health care worker usually can diagnose genital warts by seeing them on a patient. So if you notice new bumps in the vaginal or rectal area, see your doctor immediately.  Women with genital warts also should be examined for possible HPV infection of the cervix. This is done when your doctor performs a pap smear.

Genital warts is the perfect example of why I say that it is important to keep the lights on during at least the initial parts of sexual activity.  Sometimes genital warts are visible.  If you spot something that does not look right, you should stop.  Everyone will say that it is a mole or a birth mark, but I caution you to follow your instincts.


CURRENT TREATMENT FOR GENITAL WARTS: Doctors can give you medication to make the warts go away, but the HPV virus will always be in your body.