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Genital Warts

Also called: Condylomata acuminate, Venereal warts


Genital warts are a sexually transmitted disease (STD) caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV). The warts are soft, moist, pink, or flesh-colored bumps. You can have one or many of these bumps. In women, the warts usually occur in or around the vagina, on the cervix or around the anus. In men, genital warts are less common but might occur on the tip of the penis.

You can get genital warts during oral, vaginal, or anal sex with an infected partner. Correct usage of latex condoms greatly reduces, but does not completely eliminate, the risk of catching or spreading HPV. HPV vaccines may help prevent some of the HPV infections that cause genital warts.

Your health care provider usually diagnoses genital warts by seeing them. The warts might disappear on their own. If not, your health care provider can treat or remove them. The virus stays in your body even after treatment, so warts can come back.

NIH: National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases

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  • Genital Warts (American Academy of Dermatology)
  • Genital Warts (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research)
  • Genital Warts (Department of Health and Human Services, Office on Women's Health)

Prevention and Risk Factors


  • Anal Warts (American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons)

Statistics and Research

Clinical Trials


Patient Handouts