Genital warts are very common. In England, they are the
second most common type of sexually transmitted infection (STI) after Chlamydia.
They are small
fleshy growths, bumps or skin changes that appear in or around the
vagina or anus, on the cervix, in the groin or thigh area, or on the penis or
scrotum. Warts can also appear on your throat, tongue, mouth, or lips.
Genital warts are caused by the human papilloma virus (HPV) which can be passed on during
vaginal, anal and, rarely, oral sex. Not everyone who has the virus develops
genital warts. For most people, including those who have visible warts, the
virus will be cleared from the body over time. It’s rare for genital warts to
cause any long-term health problems.
can be unpleasant to look at and cause psychological distress. Also,
warts can present with itching and bleeding.
The types of HPV that cause visible genital warts do not
cause genital cancer. 90% are caused
by HPV types 6 or 11. Other strains of HPV can cause cervical cancer.
is no evidence that your fertility will be affected by genital warts.