Genital warts affect men and women and are small fleshy growths that appear around the genitals or anus. They are common and are the second most frequent STI after chlamydia. Genital warts can be treated with creams and solutions available on prescription, but you cannot use over the counter wart creams, as these are only for treating warts on the hands or verrucas.
They are small fleshy bumps and growths found around the genitals and anal area. Genital warts are the second most frequent sexually transmitted disease after chlamydia. They are caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV) and generally are painless, do not cause infertility and are not a serious threat to your health. There are 30 different types of HPV and 90% of genital warts are caused by two strains of the virus type 6 and 11. Genital warts are mainly spread during vaginal or anal sex. They also spread by sharing sex toys and by close skin to skin contact. You can catch them without penetrative sex.
Condoms may not prevent infection, and it can take months or years for them to develop. So if you are in a relationship and develop genital warts, it does not mean that your partner has had recent sex with other people. You may only get genital warts once, or they may return weeks, months or years later. It is not possible to conclude whether this is due to the original or a new HPV infection. If you have genital warts, you should not have vaginal, anal or oral sex until the infection has cleared up, as this will stop you passing on the virus to others.
Treatment is mainly by creams and solutions available only on prescription. It is possible to have more than one STD at a time, so you can get tested and treated for other STI's by following this link.
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