Treatment of HPV (Human Papilloma Virus) is dependent on many factors but important among them is the location of the warts. Common warts as seen on the skin of the hands, feet, and chest can be treated at home through the use of salicylic acid, at-home freezing kits, or by using duct tape but these measures are not indicated for genital warts.
The sensitive location of genital warts and the likelihood of causing damage to one’s self mean that genital warts should be treated by a trained medical professional only. Cryotherapy for genital warts has been found to be very effective in removing them completely and is often the preferred mode of treatment.
Cryotherapy (cryosurgery) for genital warts
Cryotherapy is carried out as an outpatient procedure, which means there is no need for a hospital stay. The doctor will apply liquid nitrogen to the affected warts and freeze them. The warts are then allowed to thaw before repeating the process.
It may be necessary to repeat this process several times depending upon the size of the genital wart.
As a patient, you are not going to experience any pain. A mild amount of burning sensation or tingling may be what you feel.
Recovery after cryotherapy for genital warts
The pace of recovery will vary with the number of warts being removed and the size of those warts, however, 1-3 weeks can be a good time frame to work with for complete recovery. Immediately after the treatment has been completed can be a difficult time for the patient because some amount of dead tissue will start to slough off.
The area treated may be a little tender and painful. An over the counter pain medication should enough to provide relief if pain is present. There may also be some ulceration that can add to the discomfort and pain in the region.
Precautions after cryosurgery for genital warts
Both men and women that have had treatment for external warts should avoid sexual intercourse until the healing has been completed (about one to three weeks). They should also get in touch with their doctor if they notice any pus formation or discharge from the treated area, any bleeding, or pain which does not subside or reduce even after a few days.
Women may notice some amount of watery discharge from their vagina and should avoid using tampons. Sanitary napkins should be used instead.
Recurrence of genital warts after cryosurgery
Cryotherapy is pretty effective in removing warts but it does not treat HPV infection from the body. The chances of recurrence of genital warts or on other parts of the body remain the same as any other method used to treat genital warts because of the nature of the disease.
In general, warts are considered as quite likely to recur over the long term.
Cryotherapy for genital warts during pregnancy
There is no problem in getting cryotherapy done to remove genital warts during surgery. The procedure is considered to be minimally invasive and does not affect the pregnancy in any way. One thing to keep in mind even after the treatment is that a person treated for HPV infection can still be a carrier and spread it to others so practicing safe sex remains important all the time.
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