Over The Counter Treatment for Genital Warts: Pros and Cons

Over the Counter Treatment for Genital WartsGenital warts-the words alone are enough to make you cringe. Genital warts caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV). HPV is sexually transmitted from one person to another. There is no genital warts cure.

The main symptom of HPV is the appearance of genital warts which are often described as looking like little cauliflower florets. Genital warts can develop in the vagina, cervix, and vulva in women. Genital warts in men may develop on the penis, scrotum, groin and thighs. Both men and women can develop genital warts around the urethra, anus, lips, mouth, tongue, larynx and throat. Genital warts are not painful in themselves, but they cause pain when having sex, urinating, or having a bowel movement. Genital warts symptoms can include vaginal bleeding after intercourse, itching in the genitals, and increased vaginal discharge. Many people with HPV don’t have any symptoms.

Since genital warts are the result of a sexually transmitted infection (HPV) many people will look for an over the counter treatment for genital warts. They are embarrassed to go to the doctor. WebMD reports that at least half sexually active people will contract HPV at some time. Before deciding to try over the counter treatment for genital warts, you will want to consider the pros and cons.


1. You avoid the embarrassment of going to the doctor

2. You avoid the cost of going to the doctor.

3. Over the counter treatment for genital warts are easy to obtain.

4. You can treat yourself in the privacy of your own home.
5. The treatment procedure is simple-you apply genital wart cream.


1. The effectiveness of the over the counter remedies for genital warts has not been proven. You might have to go to the doctor anyway.

2. HPV can cause cervical or vaginal cancer in women, genital cancer in men and anal cancer in bisexual and homosexual men. If you don’t see a doctor, you won’t know your risk.

3. Over the counter remedies for warts on other parts of the body can damage sensitive genital skin.

4. Doctors may use more aggressive measures like freezing the warts, burning the warts off, laser therapy, surgical removal or dissolving the warts with trichloracetic acid.

5. The medications that are proven to work must be prescribed by a doctor.

According to the Mayo Clinic, about 30% of genital warts go away on their own without treatment, but the virus remains in the body. Trustworthy authorities like the National Institutes of Health, WebMD, and the Mayo Clinic recommend seeing a doctor rather than trying over the counter treatment for genital warts. If you do have genital warts, remember that they are highly contagious and practice safe sex.