Genital warts usually take the form of small bumps of roughly two to three centimeters in diameter and are sometimes described as resembling miniature cauliflowers.
They typically cause no pain and minimal discomfort, are red or skin-colored in appearance, and can be either soft or hard to touch.
What can genital warts be mistaken for?
Genital warts can be mistaken for harmless things like moles, skin tags, or penile pearly papules (small bumps found around the edge of the head of the penis and also the entrance of the vagina). These things aren’t infections. They’re just normal parts of you.
Do genital warts hurt to touch?
Genital warts are usually painless, but they can be uncomfortable and cause mild pain, itching, or bleeding. They’re more likely to hurt or bleed if they become irritated due to friction.
What do genital warts look like when they first appear?
Genital warts look like skin-colored or whitish bumps that show up on your vulva, vagina, cervix, penis, scrotum, or anus. They kind of look like little pieces of cauliflower. You can have just one wart or a bunch of them, and they can be big or small. They might be itchy, but most of the time they don’t hurt.
How long does genital warts last?
Most HPV infections that cause genital warts will go away on their own, taking anywhere from a few months to two years. But even if your genital warts disappear without treatment, you may still have the virus. When left untreated, genital warts can grow very large and in big clusters.
Is there a test for genital warts?
Your doctor will examine you or take a biopsy (a sample of the wart) to see if you have genital warts. She might draw a blood sample to test for HIV and syphilis. Depending on the results, she may also refer you to a specialist for further testing.
Will I have genital warts forever?
Although HPV isn’t curable in all cases, genital warts are treatable. You can also go extended periods of time without an outbreak, but it may not be possible to get rid of the warts forever. That’s because genital warts are only a symptom of HPV, which may become a chronic, lifelong infection for some.
What to do if you think you have genital warts?
If you think you may have genital warts you should make an appointment with your GP or contact your local sexual health services. It’s important that warts are diagnosed by a doctor or nurse.
What are the symptoms of genital warts in females?
The signs and symptoms of genital warts include:
- Small, flesh-colored, brown or pink swellings in your genital area.
- A cauliflower-like shape caused by several warts close together.
- Itching or discomfort in your genital area.
- Bleeding with intercourse.