Anal warts, also known as condyloma acuminata, are caused by the human papilloma virus (HPV). The HPV virus is a sexually transmitted disease and is passed from person to person by direct contact. HPV is a very common STD, many sexually active men and women can get at least one type of HPV, as anal or genital warts, at some point in their lives. While the condition can be transmitted by anal intercourse, it also can be spread by hand contact to the anal area or simply contact with a sexual partner’s secretions from the genital areas.
It is important to note these different methods of transmission and that anal warts are not only due to having anal intercourse. Exposure to the HPV virus could have occurred recently or up to several years prior to when the anal warts were diagnosed.
Anal warts may affect the areas around the anus, inside the anus, and the penis. Most times these warts are painless and most patients initially are unaware they have them when they are small until they continue to spread to cover larger areas. Common anal wart symptoms include itching, bloody or mucus discharge, and the feeling of having a bump or mass in the anal area. At Soho Men’s Health, we offer several effective treatment modalities, including topical therapy, cryotherapy and surgical removal depending on the location and the extent of the warts. We carefully screen our patients for HPV-related anal cancer and conduct a prevention program with effective vaccination.