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Genital Warts FAQ

Genital Warts (or condyloma) is a Sexually Transmitted Disease (STD) caused by the human papilloma virus (HPV). The virus may cause wart-like bumps to form on the penis, in and around the vagina, on the cervix (opening to the womb), around the anus (butt), and rarely on the mouth. The virus is passed between people during anal, vaginal, and sometimes oral sex. These are NOT the same warts commonly found on hands and feet.

Risk Factors for Cervical Cancer

  • Early onset of sexual intercourse (< 18 years of age)
  • Multiple sex partners (3+ lifetime)
  • Male partners with multiple partners
  • Sexual partners of men whose previous sex partners developed cervical cancer
  • Cigarette smoking
  • History of HPV infection (subtypes 16, 18 – not external)

Protective Factors

  • Celibacy
  • Life-long mutual monogamy
  • Use of condoms and spermicides

No Association with Cervical Cancer

  • Herpes simplex I or II
  • Uncircumsized male partner
  • Jewish ethnicity
  • Multiple pregnancies
  • Use of oral contraceptives