Warts are among the most common sexually transmitted diseases. The term "warts" refers to swelling occurring on the skin or mucous membranes and caused by the HPV human papillomavirus.

In recent years, there has been an increase in the appearance of warts and it is estimated that over 80% of the population will at least come in contact with the HPV virus. One of the main reasons for this outbreak is that condoms do not fully protect against HPV and also that the virus may not show symptoms, so the person may not identify being a carrier.

Warts can be divided into three types:
  • Common Warts: They usually appear in the genitals of men and women, and can be transmitted through sexual contact on the lips and throat. Besides sexual intercourse, they can be transmitted otherwise (such as from an infected razor). Flat warts are associated with types of HPV 6 and 11 that do not cause dysplasia.
However, in many cases, warts that are benign lesions coexisting with infection by another type of HPV that causes malignancy.
  • External warts: They look like small pimples with an uneven surface and are benign formations mainly due to the types of HPV 6 and 11. They do not cause cancer and we see them in the genital area, and they can spread to the lips and mouth . They are transmitted very easily from person to person through vaginal and anal sexual intercourse, hands and razor blades. Although not malignant, they need immediate treatment because they are transmitted, and because if they multiply and grow they are healed more difficult.
  • Internal warts: These are types of HPV virus that cause warts in the cervix and the anus, but also the oropharyngeal cavity, even the lung. They are most commonly found in the uterine cervix and it is important to treat them directly because they are easy to recur or switch to cancer.
Warts are either flat or protruding from the skin, in small size, like a pin head. They may, however, be larger, and be alone or together. Their surface is usually abnormal and they are skin-coloured or pink, and they look like a miniature cauliflower. Some times warts are not visible, but the patient understands them when touching. In men, warts appear in the penis, the testicles and the anus, while in women, the wider external area of the genital organs and the anus, the cervix, the vagina and the perineum are affected. In individual cases, warts can also be found in the oral cavity, both in males and females.

How Are Warts Treated?
The treatment of skin warts involves the removal of cellular lesions so that they do not recur and spread, and not the healing of the HPV virus that causes them. At Dermatology & Cosmetics Lab, we apply the following methods to remove skin warts, as appropriate.
  • CO2 Laser: It is the most modern and fast treatment available for scientists to treat warts and is considered the ideal treatment method for individual small and medium sized warts that can be found anywhere in the body. The great advantage of applying the CO2 laser to the warts is that it almost always requires just one session. It also selectively targets warts without destroying adjacent tissues, since the thin light beam focuses precisely on the problem. Before the laser is applied, local anesthesia is performed and the patient can then return to his / her daily activities after the session. The skin usually does not indicate that any treatment had been undergone. Also, Laser CO2 treatment is bloodless, since the laser itself is haemostatic.
  • Cryotherapy: This is one of the classic solutions that have been applied for about 50 years. The doctor sprays the problem area with nitrogen oxide destroying skin lesions. The cooling of the cells works toxic, causing the warts to die. This treatment is considered appropriate for many small warts. Cryotherapy is painless and sometimes does not even require local anesthesia while it is applied without side effects and during pregnancy. Usually, more than one session is needed, since warts damage does not disappear immediately. It is also likely that scars from the many applications of the treatment may be impaired while vascularization of the dermis may be affected.
  • Diathermocoagulation: It is the cauterization of skin warts through electrical current. The lesions are directly and effectively destroyed by the application of a special device for monopolar diathermocoagulation. Recovery time is 2-3 weeks and this is also the major drawback of the method, and local anesthesia is required before cauterization. In some cases, after treatment, the skin may locally develop depigmentation or scarring. The positive effects of warts cauterization are immediately noticed, while the process is practically bloodless. Finally, a session is usually required.
Whichever treatment you choose for your particular case of skin warts, you should remember that the complete eradication of the HPV virus is not possible and the person remains a carrier.
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