778 SW Cherry Ave.
Seattle, WA 98115
Tel: (206) 778-9821
'I have been going to Thompson Dermatology for about 5 years now and can't believe how friendly and helpful they are.' Carol W.
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Warts appear as small raised growths on the surface of the skin. They are usually the sign of a viral infection caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV). This virus will cause rapid and out of control growth on the surface of your skin. They can come in many shapes and sizes and appear in various parts of the human body. They are commonly mistaken for moles, but unlike moles they do not have the potential to be cancerous. But warts can be embarrassing. When you contract the HPV virus through unprotected sexual contact with a partner and warts begin to appear around your genitals you have what's referred to as genital warts. Technically speaking, warts and genital warts are the same thing. The only distinction is where they appear and the mode through which the disease was transmitted.
The most common symptom of the HPV is the small bumps that are commonly known as warts. These warts can be white, pink, tan or even flesh colored and are more often than not very rough to the touch. They typically appear in multiples and rarely appear as just one singular wart. Warts typically appear on your face or hands. If you have warts on the soles of your feet you have what is known as a planters wart. Planters warts can be walking extremely painful. If warts appear on your genitals you have have genital warts. Genital warts are one of the most common sexually transmitted infections in the United States. Studies have shown that at least 50% of all sexually active adults have genital warts. Flat warts appear on the surface of your leg and can be very difficult to identify.
Depending on the location of your warts, you could face some adverse complications if you don't seek effective wart treatments. For instance, genital warts or one of the leading causes of cancer of the vulva, penis and anus. A HPV infection does not always lead to cancer, put it is important to get regular pap tests in order to identify the HPV virus as soon as possible. Genital warts can also cause some adverse complications during pregnancy. The most severe complication is reducing the vagina's ability to stretch fully during childbirth. A mother with genital warts can also transmit warts to her baby, which will then develop them on the throat, constricting airways.
If your warts are causing discomfort, or you wish to seek effective treatment for your genital warts you are in luck. There are medications and surgical procedures that can help clear an outbreak of warts. Here are some of your treatment options:
There are several different kinds of medicated ointments that can be applied directly to the surface of the wart. These medications can help reduce the appearance or warts and even stop an infection. Because warts are caused by a virus they cannot be cured. But treatment can help put them into remission. Talk to your doctor about what kind of wart medication might be best for you.
Surgery is usually required to remove larger and longer lasting warts. This might also be a consideration if your warts are not responding to medication. Possible surgical procedures include:
Cryotherapy - This is an incredibly effective surgical procedure that involves freezing a wart with liquid nitrogen. This causes a blister to form around the wart, and as the skin heals the wart can be removed. Multiple cryotherapy sessions might be required for desired results.
Electrocautery - Utilizes an electric current to remove warts
Surgical excision - Specialized tools are used to cut off the wart. You will be required to take a local anesthetic for this procedure.
Laser wart treatments - An intense beam of light is used to burn off a wart. This is usually reserved for more severe cases.