Genital Warts

Name
Genital Warts, Venereal warts, Mushroom dick

Also known as
Condylomata acuminata

Caused by
Human Papilloma Virus (HPV)

Type
Viral

Incidence
One of the most common sexually transmitted diseases in the United States, with over 3 million new cases a year.

Symptoms
Flat, smooth, bumpy, or round warts on the genital region (either internal or external) which can be invisible to the naked eye. If left untreated, can spread and develop a cauliflower-like appearance. Fifty percent of those infected never develop warts, but may still be infectious to others.

Incubation
Symptoms are likely to appear one to three months after exposure.

Diagnosis
Colposcopy. The doctor will swab the skin with a diluted vinegar solution then examine the area with a magnifying lens and powerful light source. Warts will appear as white spots.

Complications
Has been associated with precancerous and cancerous cell changes on the cervix and, less commonly, other genital areas. If left untreated, can block the opening to the urethra, vagina or anus, causing great discomfort.

Treatment
Warts can be removed via: laser, freezing (cryosurgery), acid solution (Podophyllin cream), or surgery. However, the virus that causes infection is not currently curable and therefore symptoms may recur.

Appearance
penis with genital warts