What Are Genital Warts?


Quick Answer

Genital warts are growths on the genitals that is spread by sexual contact, according to the National Institutes of Health MedlinePlus. The warts can affect the uterus, cervix and anus in women.

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Full Answer

In men, the warts can affect the penis and testicles. The condition is caused by a virus called the human Papilloma virus and the warts present as flat or raised, flesh-colored bumps. On occasion, the warts can affect the mouth and throat.

Along with the bumps, symptoms of genital warts include genital itching or bleeds, especially after intercourse. The disease is often diagnosed by a physical exam, but a doctor can have the skin biopsied to ensure the diagnosis is correct, according to WebMD.

After the person has been diagnosed with the warts, the treatment options vary greatly. Some people choose to let them go untreated, especially if symptoms are not present. Some warts even resolve on their own, but they may come back. Other treatment options include removing the visible warts. Even if the warts are not present, a person affected by the disease can spread it to others if they have unprotected sex. If a person suspects they have the warts, they should contact their doctor for testing.

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