Genital warts are a sexually transmitted disease that look like a series of lesions which are either raised or flat growths, usually found in the genital region of a person’s body. Genital warts can look very unpleasant and can also be very bothersome.
Genital warts are caused by the virus known as HPV or Human Papillomavirus. Which can affect both men and women and can infect individuals of all ages.
Studies have shown these trends in genital wart infections:
- The largest risk of getting Genital Warts belongs to the age bracket of between 17 to 33 years old. Genital warts are proven to have a high infection rate of about 60%. Individuals can become infected with genital warts in a single occurrence of sexual activity with an infected partner.
- For young children between infancy to four years old, genital warts are often transmitted though a non-sexual manner or direct physical contact. It is stated by experts that if children are found to have genital warts, there is a big probability that they were sexually abused.
Currently there are over a hundred types of Human Papillomavirus, the virus that causes genital warts that are known to the medical world with more than 40 types of HPV producing the biggest risks.
Genital warts are considered a major hindrance as with them comes itchiness and swelling, some symptoms of genital warts are:
- The appearance of lesions with an average size of about one millimeter upto a few centimeters. These can be a collection of warts forming what looks like to be one big lesion.
- Individuals infected with genital warts will often notice a feeling of severe itching, a formation of bumps that are painless, and discharge.
- In rare and extreme cases, individuals may experience bleeding or some may have a hard time urinating as the genital warts may have formed inside the genital area where the urine passes to exit the body.
Genital Warts prevention includes taking care of your personal hygiene and being extra careful in engaging in sexual activity as to prevent infection of the HPV virus. Infected patients are advised to resist squeezing or picking the warts as to avoid further infection.
Medical treatment involves a variety of methods proven safe and effective by experts, these include:
- Cryotheraphy technique – it involves the process of freezing the genital wart using the chemical liquid nitrogen or in some cases a “cryoprobe”. It is a popular and highly effective treatment that garners a high success rate with a very minimal amount of side effects.
- Laser treatment – is a method used for re-occurring cases of genital warts. Patients are required to undergo general anesthesia. The laser actually eliminates the genital warts lesions caused by the HPV by literally destroying them.
- Electrodesiccation – is a method that uses currents of electricity as a tool to eliminate and remove the warts.
The FDA approved a HPV or Genital wart vaccine in 2006. It is beneficial for women and girls from ages 9 to 26 years. It is proven to be 100% successful in preventing the HPV disease and has no known side effects. Although the best prevention still is the use of protection when engaging in sexual activity and to seek medical help as soon as any genital wart symptoms begin to show up.