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Treating Genital Warts: An Overview
There are a number of different treatment options for genital warts
, including medications and procedures. Your healthcare provider will consider your wishes and the size, location, and number of warts before recommending treatment.
Each of these options has different success rates, cost, and possible side effects. Make sure to discuss your genital warts treatment options with your healthcare provider before deciding together what is best for your situation.
Your healthcare provider may also recommend "watchful waiting," because genital warts can disappear on their own without treatment.
There are no over-the-counter treatments for genital warts. If you decide to have warts removed, do not use over-the counter medicines meant for other kinds of warts.
Medications Used for Genital Warts
Several prescription medications are approved as genital warts treatments. Some of these are applied by your healthcare provider; others can be applied at home.
These "home treatments" still require a prescription. They include:
These medications can clear up genital warts in up to 80 percent of cases.
Medications your healthcare provider may use at the office include:
- 20% podophyllin resin
- Trichloroacetic acid (TCA).
These treatments also have an up-to-80-percent success rate in removing genital warts.
If you are pregnant, you should not use podophyllin or podofilox because they are absorbed by your skin and may cause birth defects in your baby. TCA is a good option for women who are pregnant.