HPV / Genital Warts
- What is it? Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) - a group of more than 70 viruses, some of which can lead to cervical cancer. Several strains of HPV cause external genital warts. .
- How is it contracted? Through oral, anal, and vaginal sex and through skin-to-skin contact. To help prevent infection, use a condom. It's not clear exactly how effective condoms are at protecting against HPV and genital warts, but they will protect you against other STDs, including HIV.
- Incubation Period: Anywhere from one month to several years
- Symptoms: Many types of HPV have no symptoms, though some cause visible genital warts that may be found in the vagina or urethra or on the cervix, vulva, penis, or anus. Rarely, they are found in the mouth or throat. Warts are often flesh-colored, soft to the touch, and may look like miniature cauliflower florets. They usually grow in more than one area and are often painless, although they may itch.