What is it?
Human papilloma virus (HPV) is the name for a group of viruses that affect your skin and the moist membranes lining your body.
Examples of this include your: * cervix * anus * mouth and throat
What are the symptoms?
In most cases, your bodys immune system defeats an HPV infection before it creates warts. When warts do appear, they vary in appearance depending on which variety of HPV is involved:
Genital warts. These appear as flat lesions, small cauliflower-like bumps or tiny stem-like protrusions. In women, genital warts appear mostly on the vulva but can also occur near the anus, on the cervix or in the vagina.
In men, genital warts appear on the penis and scrotum or around the anus. Genital warts rarely cause discomfort or pain, though they may itch.
Common warts. Common warts appear as rough, raised bumps and usually occur on the hands, fingers or elbows. In most cases, common warts are simply unsightly, but they can also be painful or susceptible to injury or bleeding.
Plantar warts. Plantar warts are hard, grainy growths that usually appear on the heels or balls of your feet. These warts might cause discomfort.
Flat warts. Flat warts are flat-topped, slightly raised lesions darker than your skin. They can appear anywhere, but children usually get them on the face and men tend to get them in the beard area. Women tend to get them on the legs.
Things to watch out for
GP should be contacted for cervical screening test (previously known as a smear test), a method of detecting abnormal cells on the cervix and determining a treatment plan.