HPV, the virus that can cause cervical cancer in woman, can also cause genital warts in men. Men are often referred to the urologist when their partner learns that they have HPV related changes on a PAP smear or have genital warts themselves. It is the urologist's job to evaluate the man for any visible warts and to treat them if present. Here are 4 ways to treat warts in men.
- Medication: A high percentage of penile warts will disappear after 4-6 weeks of treatment with a chemotherapeutic gel. When used properly, there are few side effects. The gel is quite expensive for people without good prescription coverage.
- Laser surgery: This is a very effective way to treat warts but it must be done in a hospital type setting with a special laser, thus making it quite costly. For patients without adequate insurance coverage, this may not be a good approach.
- Cryotherapy: This is an excellent and inexpensive method to treat penile warts. It is painless, can be done in the office, and has a very low recurrence rate. The only downside is the typical need for 2-4 treatments to completely erradicate the warts.
- Cautery and excision: This is the least expensive way to remove the lesions but is associated with high recurrence rates and scar formation.