Anal warts, also known as condyloma, are a type of sexually transmitted infection caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV). These warts typically appear as small, raised, and sometimes cauliflower-shaped bumps around the anus but can also appear in the genital area of both males and females.
Studies have revealed that almost all sexually active people will become infected by at least one type of HPV at some point in their lives.
Anal warts can be uncomfortable and may cause itching or bleeding. While the warts themselves are not typically dangerous, warts caused by certain strains of HPV can lead to other complications such as throat, rectal, and anal cancer.
Welcome to RS Surgical
Our office, RS Surgical in Pompano Beach, FL, specializes in anal wart diagnosis and anal wart surgery and also offers a wide range of additional services for patients who are suffering from other types of gastrointestinal issues. We provide superior care and exceptional treatment in a comfortable environment, use the latest equipment, and many of the most advanced techniques in our diagnosis and treatment of patients.
Who’s at risk?
Anyone who is sexually active can contract HPV and potentially develop anal warts, but certain groups of people are at higher risk. Men who have sex with men are particularly susceptible, as anal sex increases the risk of transmitting the virus.
Other factors that may increase the risk of developing anal warts include having multiple sexual partners, engaging in unprotected sex, and having a weakened immune system because of other health conditions, including HIV or many forms of cancer.
Diagnosing a patient’s condition
During the initial examination, our doctor will conduct an anorectal exam in addition to an evaluation of the pelvic region, and the penile and vaginal area. A digital examination of the rectum may be performed to rule out the presence of a mass. The anal canal may be subject to an anoscopy to look for additional warts. Women may have a speculum examination of their vagina.
Anal warts can only be removed by an anal wart specialist. If they are not removed, anal warts will grow larger and multiply. If warts are left untreated, it can lead to an increased risk of anal cancer, although the risk is low.
When anal warts are removed during surgery by an anal wart specialist, a pathologist will examine the warts for any abnormal changes. These changes or abnormalities — called anal dysplasia — can be a precursor to anal cancer, although it will be treated differently than an anal cancer.
Because anal dysplasia originates as an HPV infection, patients will be monitored closely by their physicians, and new warts or lesions will be evaluated immediately.
How we treat our patients
Treatment options for anal warts include topical medications, cryotherapy (freezing the warts), laser therapy, or anal wart removal surgery. It’s important to seek medical attention if you suspect you may have anal warts or any other type of sexually transmitted infection to receive proper diagnosis and treatment. These treatments will provide relief but don’t eliminate the warts.
Depending on the specific strain of HPV that is causing the infection, comorbidities, and behavioral risk factors, individuals with anal warts may be at a higher risk of developing anal cancer. Therefore, the goals of management include treating visible lesions, ruling out malignancies, and instituting a surveillance program to reduce the risk of advanced malignancies.
Additionally, practicing safe sex and getting vaccinated against HPV can help reduce the risk of developing anal warts.
Contact us today
If you live in southeast Florida and are suffering from anal warts or you are hoping to receive some information about anal wart prevention and care, call our RS Surgical office in Pompano Beach at (954) 807.9545 or click here to visit our website and schedule an appointment.