What are Anal Warts
Anal warts, also called “condyloma acuminata” are a condition that affects the area around and inside the anus. They first appear as tiny spots or growths, perhaps as small as the head of a pin, and may grow quite large, covering the entire anal area. Usually, they do not cause pain or discomfort and patients may be unaware that the warts are present. Certain patients will experience symptoms such as itching, bleeding, mucus discharge and/or a feeling of a mass in the anal area.
What causes Anal Warts?
They are caused by the human papilloma virus (HPV), which is transmitted from person to person by direct contact. HPV is considered a sexually transmitted disease (STD). The development of anal warts is not necessarily due to anal intercourse.
Should they be removed?
Yes. If they are not removed, the warts usually grow larger and multiply. Left untreated, warts may lead to an increased risk of anal cancer in the affected area.
What treatments are available for anal warts?
If warts are very small and are located only on the skin around the anus, they may be treated with a topical medication. They may also be treated using cryotherapy, which involves freezing the warts with liquid nitrogen, or they may be removed using the surgical CO2 Laser. Surgery usually involves the excision (removal) or fulguration (burning) of the warts. Despite the fact that this treatment provides immediate results, it must be performed using either a local anaesthetic, such as Novocaine, or a general or spinal anaesthetic, depending on the number and exact location of warts being treated. It is important to carry out an internal examination of the anal area with a small instrument (anoscope) by the treating physician to make sure that there are nowarts inside the anal canal (internal anal warts). Internal anal warts may not be appropriate for treatment with topical medications, and surgery may be required.
Can they be treated in just one session?
When warts cover a larger part of the skin, the doctor may want to treat them progressively. Furthermore, recurrent warts are common. The virus that causes warts may be underlying in tissues that appear normal for several months before new warts are apparent.
What preventive measures can be used to avoid anal warts reappearance?
In certain cases, warts may come back repeatedly after successful removal, given that the virus that causes warts can stay inactive for a period of time in body tissues. Discuss with your doctor how often you should be examined to treat warts if they come back.
- Avoid sexual contact with persons that have anal or genital warts.
- As many people many not know that they have this condition, sexual abstinence, the use of condoms or limiting sexual contact with one partner will reduce the possible exposure to the easily transmitted virus causing warts.
- As a preventive measure, sexual partners should be examined for warts and other sexually transmitted diseases, even when no symptoms are present.
See the other categories on warts and call us on 216 900 5000 to evaluate your condition or answer any questions you may have: