No cure is available for the virus that causes human papillomavirus infection, according to Cleveland Clinic. There are ways to treat problems such as genital warts and abnormal cervical cells that are caused by the virus. Wart therapy involves various surgical techniques and prescription creams. Regular Pap smears are recommended to determine if abnormal cervical cells develop; the frequency of Pap smears is related to the subtype of HPV.
Medications used to treat genital warts include imiquimod, a prescription cream applied directly to the wart, notes Mayo Clinic. Imiquimod is known to assist the body’s immune system to eliminate the wart but may cause swelling and redness in the area. Podofilox solution, used to destroy the wart, may cause itching and pain. An acid used to eliminate warts by burning them off may be irritating to the adjacent tissue.
An over-the-counter medication, salicylic acid, removes the wart in layers. Surgical procedures, according to Mayo Clinic, include cryotherapy, a technique that uses nitrogen to freeze the wart, and electrocautery, which removes the wart by application of electric current. The intense light of lasers removes warts. In 70 to 90 percent of cases, the virus clears by itself without treatment. Consulting a physician to determine if treatment is necessary is important.