The best way to treat genital warts, caused by the human papilomavirus, is to seek help from a physician. A doctor can evaluate what kind of treatment needs to be done to your genital warts, or if any needs to be done at all. A professional can also make sure that you don't have a more serious condition.
Doctors will often adopt a wait and see attitude at first. This is because genital warts often go away spontaneously. Depending on the extent of the problem, the waiting period may be short or longer. Once it is past, if the genital warts are still there, treatment will begin.
There are several creams that are used for genital warts. A doctor may prescribe Podofilox for use at home. The doctor will explain how to use the cream. Another cream that might be prescribed is Aldara. This medication aids the immune system in fighting off the virus. It has a very high success rate with low recurrence.
Fluorouracil is a medication in a cream. This medication prevents HPV and this stops warts from multiplying. It can also get rid of existing warts. The doctor can tell you how to use it. You will need to protect the healthy skin with petroleum jelly.
Fluorouracil is very good for treating all the sensitive areas of the genitals. However, pregnant women can't use this treatment. Also, people often have to stop treatment after having a severe reaction to the cream.
Podophyllum resin can only be applied by a doctor. The doctor oversees treatment once a week for at least six weeks. A different version of the same substance, podofilox lotion, can be used by the patient at home with a few instructions from the doctor.
Health care professionals are also responsible for the application of trichloroacetic acid (TCA) or bichloroacetic acid (BCA). This medication works by destroying proteins in cells. Thus, it is important to only treat the genital warts and not the surrounding tissue.
Interferon is a product that has been used to treat immunity problems of all kinds. It attacks HPV and boosts the immune system. The methods of delivery are cream, lotion, or injection at the base of the genital warts. It has some side effects, especially for pregnant women.
Surgery may be required for some genital warts. Simple excision, or cutting off, of warts is done in some cases. It is especially effective on genital warts of the vagina, the penis, and around the anus. The area should be healed in three weeks at most, if all goes well.
Sometimes doctors use an electric probe to burn off genital warts. This is called electrocautery and is most useful for genital warts around the anus, on the penis and on the vulva. Local or general anesthesia is used, depending on the severity of the problem. The healing should be finished in a month or less.
Laser surgery can also be effective when all else fails, or if the patient is pregnant and needs warts removed. The genital warts are burned off with the laser. They heal within a month.