How to treat human papillomavirus (HPV) in men?
Papillomavirus is a virus that infects only humans and causes irreversible changes in epithelial tissues. Statistics say that today about 30% of Russians suffer from human papillomavirus (HPV).
Dangerous and oncogenic, HPV can provoke the development of cancer and disrupt the normal functioning of the body of a man. How is this disease transmitted, how is it treated and what should be done so as not to become its carrier?
Causes and transmission of the disease
A man can become infected with papillomavirus in one of the following ways:
- Sexually during any sexual contact (oral, anal or traditional). Certain papillomavirus species (types 16 and 18, carcinogenic types) are usually at risk of sexual transmission in both men and women.
- Through the use of common household items, clothes, a toilet and a bathroom. The virus can be transmitted through saliva, dishes, kisses. There are frequent cases of the virus entering the body through dirty hands. Also, one cannot exclude the likelihood of infection in public places - baths, gyms.
- From the mother during pregnancy through the placenta. At the same time, papillomas can be found in the child in the passages of the internal organs, trachea, bronchi, and so on.
- At childbirth. From the first day of life, a man can be a carrier of papillomavirus if, during childbirth, he came into contact with infected tissues of the mother's vagina (during natural birth). Frequent cases of infection are observed if the newborn swallows the cervix or vagina of the mother during childbirth.
- With blood transfusion and other medical procedures. Receiving infected blood, a man also becomes a carrier of the virus. There are frequent cases of infection from a poorly sterilized medical instrument.
Here's how to get papillomavirus.
Causes of the disease
The causative agent of papillomavirus in men is extremely small, which allows it to freely penetrate the body even through microscopic lesions on the skin or mucous membranes. There are several ways to transmit the virus:
- Sexual method. At the same time, the virus can penetrate into the male body not only with traditional, but also with other types of sex. Papillomavirus infection in men of non-traditional sexual orientation can get during anal contact. Due to the high trauma of the mucous membranes, the risk of HPV infection increases significantly.
- Household method of infection. Such an opportunity to get the virus is due to the fact that it is able to maintain its viability for a long time in a warm, humid environment. Therefore, the probability of contracting HPV is high among those who often visit baths and saunas. An infection can also get into the body when using one towel with an infected person.
A lecture on the disease is delivered by dermatovenerologist Alexei Yuryevich Putintsev:
- From mother to baby during his passage through the birth canal.
- Through blood (during surgery, blood transfusion, dental treatment, during a manicure procedure, etc.)
An increased risk of HPV infection in a man appears if he often changes his sexual partners and neglects the use of barrier methods of contraception. Although doctors say that a condom is not able to give a 100% guarantee to prevent transmission of the virus, since it has microscopic dimensions and is able to penetrate the pores of latex. Also, one should not forget that HPV in a small amount can be present in saliva, so a man can become infected with it even through a kiss. Papilloma virus is not transmitted by airborne droplets.
The risk of infection is higher in those men who have bad habits or a weakened immune system, for example, after prolonged treatment with antibacterial drugs.
What is papilloma virus in men
What is HPV in a man? This infection with anogenital (venereal) warts occurs on the skin and mucous genital organs (external), as well as the urethra or perianal region.
HPV in men manifests itself most often due to sexual activity. This is the main reason the virus enters the body. Much less often, infection occurs through the household:
- through dirty clothes (which were already worn by a sick person),
- contact with the mucous membranes or skin of the patient,
- through personal hygiene items.
For these reasons, the use of condoms (barrier methods of contraception) cannot fully protect the virus from “penetration” into the body. It is believed that up to 80% of men were previously infected or currently have the disease. Some sources indicate a significantly lower percentage of infected HPV. However, the total number of sick or ever ill people is very large.
Types of Oncogenicity Virus
Today, experts have identified about 600 human papillomaviruses, divided into 40 systematic species. However, only some of them are dangerous to human health.
The ICD-10 International Classification of Diseases assigns code B00.7 to the human papillomavirus.
In the genital and perianal regions, outgrowths of more than 40 strains are caused, but the greatest danger lies not in the cosmetic effect, but in the probability of tumors degenerating into malignant formations. Each species has its own degree of oncogenicity. To this extent, they are divided into the following groups:
- non-oncogenic (almost never cause cancer)
- low oncogenic (cause malignant processes in rare cases)
- oncogenic (relatively often provoke the onset of the cancer process).
It is well established that even highly oncogenic groups are more likely to give rise to malignant tumors in the presence of a genetic predisposition, and for men who do not have such a predisposition, the risk is minimized.
Once in the body, the virus may not manifest itself for a long time. A man is his carrier. The pathogen is activated in the following situations:
- with weakening of the body's defenses against the background of a drop in immunity,
- with sexually transmitted diseases,
- with frequent stresses, emotional and physical overload.
The cases described above allow harmful bacteria to concentrate on one area of the dermis or mucous membrane, change the structure of the epithelium and appear as papillomas.
Papillomavirus: types and genotypes
Today, papillomavirus is one of the most common infections that can be transmitted sexually. If science knows only 150 species of human papillomavirus, only 34 of them can be genital and transmitted through sex.
According to the degree of oncogenic risk (the ability to cause cancer and precancerous condition), viruses are divided into safe and low or high risk groups.
Oncogenically safe types of papillomavirus:
Types of human papillomavirus with a high risk of developing cancer (oncogenic):
Types of papillomavirus with a low risk of developing cancer:
Human papillomavirus of types 1-5 is considered to be carcinogenic, however, these 5 types, as well as 7, 10, 12 and 14, 15, 17, from 19 to 24, 26-27, 29 and 57, cause the appearance of wart neoplasms on body tissues. A group of types of low risk usually provokes the growth of genital warts, rarely found in patients with cancer. A high-risk group usually causes carcinoma.
The genitals of a man usually affect the 6th, 11th and 13th genotype, 16th type, 18th, 31st, 33rd and 35th, causing the appearance of genital papillomas and genital warts on the penis. If a man has the human papillomavirus 16, 18, 31, 33, 56 and 66, 70 of the genotype, he is at increased risk of developing cancer of the genital organs. Being a carrier of one of the listed types of virus, a man should be checked regularly by a doctor and do tests for tumor markers in order to stop the development of a dangerous disease in time.
Each of these types of human papillomavirus can be obtained by a man from his sexual partner or by domestic means, as well as he can infect others.
After the papilloma virus is in the human body, it may not manifest itself for a very long time (sometimes up to ten years), being in an inactive state. Strong immunity can prevent the manifestation of HPV on the body. If the immune system at some point malfunctions, then the man’s body shows signs of HPV. As a result of the activation of the virus, it accumulates in a certain place, disrupting the functioning of epithelial cells.
Depending on what type of virus the person was infected with, the following appear on his body:
- Papillomas are growths that have a shade, like the skin of a person or brown. Their distinctive feature is the nostrilized surface. They are mainly diagnosed on the skin of the face or soles of the feet.
- Genital warts - outwardly look like a column with a narrow leg. There are single or multiple, large or small neoplasms. Most often, the anus and male genitalia (pubis, testicle, etc.) are affected.
- A genital wart in appearance resembles a cauliflower inflorescence or a cockscomb. Such growths are able to emit an unpleasant odor and disrupt the outflow of urine.
- Flat condylomas are considered the most dangerous formations that lead to tissue deformation. Itching and a burning sensation of such growths are often noted.
- Intraepithelial papillomas are similar to flat, but differ in growth in tissue.
What is the danger of HPV for men
Appearing warts and papillomas can not be cut off or deliberately torn from the skin. Because of this, the undesirable effects of HPV may appear, and the symptoms in men - the wart itches, hurts, sometimes significantly intensifies. Because of this, neoplasms appear in greater numbers, the process of “malignancy” (malignancy) of the neoplasm may begin.
For activation in the body, the pathogen must penetrate into the cells and activate. But not always contact with the pathogen means the onset of the disease. It depends on the degree of resistance of the immune system to viral agents: sometimes, even with daily contact, protection can be so effective that the disease will not develop.
There are four main routes of transmission of an infectious agent:
- Sexual contact. This path is implemented most often and is a classic. The causative agent is equally likely to invade the epithelial tissue in all types of sex: vaginal, oral or anal. In addition, the transmission of the virus occurs with the same success without intercourse, and during kisses.
- Contact household way. The rarest transmission method. Since the virus is able to live for a short time after leaving the body in the external environment, in the presence of minor injuries on the skin, it can invade during the use of personal things of a sick person (dishes, bedding or underwear, personal items). Public toilets, vehicles, saunas are areas of increased danger of human papillomavirus infection, since the pathogen is found in all physiological fluids.
- Mother-to-child transmission. Infection occurs during the perinatal period or when the fetus passes through the birth canal. Virus transmission is not necessary, even in the case of a high titer of the presence of microorganisms in the mother, sometimes infection is not observed.
- Autoinfection. Secondary spread of infection over the patient’s body when shaving or after transferring the microbe by hand from the lesion to new foci.
Experts believe that papillomavirus is present in the organisms of 50% of people, but in most it takes the form of carriage and does not provoke the appearance of symptoms.
Factors that increase the likelihood of infection with the papilloma virus:
- early sexual intercourse,
- frequent change of sexual partners and neglect of methods of barrier contraception,
- age 17-25 years (peak sexual activity),
- sexual intercourse with a partner who has previously suffered any sexually transmitted diseases (due to the high association of HPV with other sexually transmitted diseases),
- any diseases with a chronic course,
- taking glucocorticosteroids or cytostatics (antitumor agents),
- thyroid dysfunction,
- impaired insulin metabolism,
- lack of vitamins, especially - group B.
Any deterioration in immunity and immunosuppressive factors dramatically increase the chances of the pathogen to introduce and activate in the body.
Signs and features of the manifestation of HPV in men
The main sign of the presence of the human papillomavirus is the appearance of warts, papillomas and genital warts on the skin and mucous membranes of the body. Warts and papillomas do not pose a clear threat to human health, while condylomas located in the genital area and anal opening can cause significant harm.
At the initial stage of infection, a man may not be aware of the presence of HPV in the body. The infection sleeps and does not manifest itself while the immune system is working properly. As soon as it weakens, the virus is activated, growths appear on the body.
With the penetration of HPV into the mucous membrane of the external openings of the urethra or rectum, genital warts are formed.
The consequences of getting HPV into the male body can be very different, and will depend on the type of microorganism. The most dangerous (highly oncogenic) are HPV 51, HPV 52 and HPV 56, which can degenerate into a cancerous tumor.
The development of cancer with infection
The defeat of the papilloma of the urethra can quickly spread inside the urethra and can even penetrate the bladder. In this case, the urethra is blocked, urine outflow and the functioning of the urinary system are disturbed.
Formations that appear in the genital area often become malignant. The risk of developing a malignant tumor of the rectum is higher in men who practice alternative sex. With oral contact, papillomas can affect the throat.
How common are papillomavirus health problems among men?
In the CIS, about 1% of sexually active guys have genital warts at least once in their life.
Every year in the CIS approximately is observed:
- 400 men with penis cancer,
- 1,500 men with anus cancer,
- 5,600 men with oropharyngeal cancer, but many of these cases are caused by smoking and drinking alcohol rather than HPV.
Some men are more prone to human papillomavirus disease.
These are men with a homosexual and bisexual orientation. Among them, 17 times more cases of anus cancer.
Another risk category is people with a weak immune system, including those infected with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), are more likely to experience anus cancer. Men with HIV are also more prone to a more severe manifestation in the form of warts, which are more difficult to remove.
How does the development of the disease
After ingestion, the microorganism enters the bloodstream and spreads throughout the body.Immediately after being introduced into target cells, it begins to actively embed its DNA strand into the cell helix. Virus DNA includes a new genetic program in the cell designed for rapid division. Due to unlimited divisions, outgrowths characteristic of the human papillomavirus appear on the skin.
The course of the disease is divided into several stages:
- Latent (hidden) period. There are no symptoms during the incubation period, so the patient himself does not know about the onset of infection. Despite the absence of clinical manifestations, a man is able to infect a partner during sex. The incubation period lasts from a couple of months to several years until the immune system receives stress.
- The beginning of the active stage. At this point, the pathogen increases its presence in the cells of the body so much that it provokes the appearance of the first symptoms.
- Stage of active progress. All manifestations in this period occur very markedly and intensively increase.
After reaching a clinical maximum, the disease develops in one of the possible directions:
- complete self-healing of the body with the final disappearance of all signs of infection,
- slow flow or stop the development of outgrowths (the infection does not pass, but also does not progress)
- rapid progress of all symptoms, the occurrence of secondary infection, an increase in the area of lesions,
- transition to a malignant course.
Factors and risk group
The disease is most often diagnosed in men of childbearing age, at the peak of sexual activity, aged 18 to 45-50 years. But in medicine, there were cases of infection at an earlier age, when the virus penetrated the body of young people through the household.
Also, the disease manifests itself if a man has concomitant ailments of the genitourinary system, kidneys, digestive organs, blood vessels and liver. The activity of the virus provokes prolonged use of certain medications, for example, immunosuppressants, glucocorticoids and cytostatics. They are forced to accept patients suffering from tumor pathologies, severe allergic and rheumatic diseases.
HPV often occurs in those men who often change sexual partners, do not use barrier methods of contraception, have bad habits and weak immunity.
About the course of the disease, its symptoms and what is dangerous
Once in the body of a man, the papilloma virus has been in a latent state for quite a long time - the incubation period is from 15 days to a year, and occasionally it can last several years. The disease itself usually proceeds secretly and asymptomatically. Often a man can become infected with several types of virus at once, one of which sometimes inhibits the development of others.
Due to the influence of factors that weaken the immune system, the papilloma virus activates, begins to multiply and shows itself as tumors on the skin and mucous membranes of the body and genitals (often on the glans penis). In 9 out of 10 men, the body independently heals itself in a year; in the remaining 10%, the disease can go into the chronic stage with periodic manifestations in the form of warts, papillomas and genital warts. Depending on the type of virus obtained, these neoplasms can become malignant.
An accurate prognosis in the presence of a papilloma virus in a man will not be given by any doctor: accurate diagnosis of the type of virus is needed. In the presence of viruses of type 1-5, the prognosis is favorable - these types of HPV are not dangerous. If a man is a carrier of the oncogenic group of viruses, the prognosis is rapidly deteriorating: there are high risks of the transition of the infection to a chronic form and the appearance of cancer.
Causes of virus infection and transmission
Papillomavirus infection appears in men only after infection from another person. Infection occurs in three ways - during sexual intercourse, from mother to child during birth, through contact-household means.
The entry gates for infection are microscopic lesions on the skin or mucous membrane that a man may not see. Such microcracks are normal during sexual contact. To a greater extent, they arise in the anus. In a smaller one, the vaginal mucosa is affected. The cervix in the presence of erosion in 100% is affected by HPV. The head of the penis is the least susceptible to injury.
HPV can be infected without intimacy. The infection easily enters the body at public places. Common household transmission routes:
- the use of other people's hygiene items (towels, washcloths, razors, scissors, tweezers),
- wearing someone else’s clothes and shoes,
- Sharing dishes
- walking barefoot on the beach
- swimming pools
- baths, saunas, sports locker rooms,
- lack of sterilization of salon tools,
- handshakes with carriers at the stage of exacerbation of the disease,
- touching the growths of the wearer.
Human papillomavirus is a contagious infectious disease. Not a single person on the planet is safe from infection. Strengthening immunity eliminates the possibility of HPV activation. The appearance of growths is observed after prolonged illness, taking antibiotics, hypothermia and stress. This can happen as a result of vitamin deficiency, debilitating mental and physical stress, hormonal disorders. Drinking alcohol and smoking only increase the likelihood of immunodeficiency.
To make a final diagnosis and determine the type of virus, you need to do an HPV test, which is prescribed after an examination and medical history. Diagnosis of HPV in men is based on:
- Scraping and smear from the urethra.
- PCR test, which makes it possible to identify the type of pathogen by DNA and its amount in the body of a man. This requires a blood sampling, prostate secretion or a smear from the urethra.
- Biopsies - examination of a sample of tissues taken during condyloma removal.
In more detail, what tests should be taken with HPV tells the urologist Sergei Gennadevich Lenkin:
- Urethroscopy, which makes it possible to visually examine the possible changes that occur in the urethra of a man.
- For homosexuals, it is recommended to take an HPV test, which is taken directly from the anal area, where papillomas can occur.
What are the signs and symptoms of papilloma virus in men?
Most people who are infected never encounter symptoms.
But those who have health problems should look for signs and symptoms:
- One or more originated on the penis, eggs, groin, thighs, anus, or next to it.
- May be located singly and in groups. They can be elevated or, conversely, be at the level of the skin around. There are warts in the form of cauliflower. Usually they do not cause inconvenience.
- May appear after weeks and months from the time of sex.
- Sometimes there are no signs.
- Anus bleeding, pain, itching, or discharge.
- Swollen lymph nodes in the anus or groin.
- Changes in bowel behavior or feces.
- First signs: discoloration, thickening of the skin or growing tissue.
- Late manifestations: the penis is swollen or inflamed. Usually, pain does not occur, but in some cases, an inflamed member can hurt and bleed.
Different types of oropharyngeal cancer:
- Sore throat or earache that does not go anywhere.
- Persistent cough.
- Pain or difficulty swallowing and breathing.
- Weight loss.
- Hoarseness or change in voice that lasts more than two weeks.
- The growth on the neck.
The main and most dangerous complication of the papilloma virus is cancer - HPV can provoke the development of cancer of the prostate, penis and rectum (the latter complication is typical for men practicing homosexual relationships).
Also, the virus can cause growth of neoplasms in various parts of the body, complicating physiological processes: in the urethra, nasopharynx, trachea, bronchi and other channels of the body.
Unfortunately, painful sensations and disruption of the normal functioning of the body are guaranteed.
Is a virus in the body dangerous for a man and possible consequences
The danger of HPV depends on the strain that has entered the body of a man. Modern medicine distinguishes 4 types of genotypes - non-oncogenic, with a low degree, with an average degree, highly oncogenic types. The former are practically harmless to the human body. These include ordinary warts, hanging papillomas, plantar growths. The danger can only be presented in cases of abundant growth, when the integrity of the skin tissue is violated. This is most often observed in people with severe immunodeficiency. Most often, single warts appear and cause only aesthetic discomfort.
Oncogenic strains are characterized by the development of growths in the genital area and anus. This phenomenon can be considered dangerous. Damage to genital warts leads to a bacterial infection. A man is hurt when visiting the toilet. Blood impurities may be present in the discharge.
Without timely comprehensive treatment, you can encounter a number of unpleasant and dangerous consequences:
- genital inflammation,
- bacterial diseases of the genitourinary system,
- growth of formations - papillomatosis,
- painful urination, fecal bowel movement,
- damage to the integrity of the skin and mucous membranes of the intimate area.
Men were more fortunate than women; they have a much lesser chance of cancer. According to statistics, for 3 sick women, there are 1 man. But to exclude the likelihood of developing a dangerous disease and to refuse full treatment is not recommended.
How to treat HPV in men?
Doctors distinguish conservative and surgical treatment of papilloma in men. Sometimes, therapy may not be required, since the immune system itself destroys the virus and does not allow it to develop, affecting the patient's tissues.
If an HPV test in a man shows the presence of a virus in the body, the doctor will prescribe treatment with such drugs:
- Immunomodulators are drugs that can strengthen the body's defenses and at the same time inhibit the development of various formations. These drugs include: “Allokin-alpha”, “Viferon”, “Isoprinazine”, “Genefron”, etc. They can be prescribed in the form of tablets or rectal suppositories.
- Medicines that stimulate the body's production of its own interferons (Cycloferon, Indinal, Amiksin).
- Treatment with cytostatic drugs that prevent the division of cells affected by the papilloma virus ("Condilin", "Podophyllum", etc.). They are available in the form of ointments or other topical preparations.
The average price in pharmacies for a tube of viferon gel is 150 rubles
Only a doctor can recommend the treatment of HPV with a particular drug after a comprehensive diagnosis and determination of the type of virus. This is due to the fact that some of them can provoke the degeneration of cells into malignant formations. Also, doctors do not recommend self-medication and the use of folk remedies.
Destructive treatment of papillomas can be carried out using:
- Electrocoagulation, when the removal of the growth is carried out using electric current. As a result, the papilloma disappears, and the wound remains in its place. After a few weeks, such a wound is delayed.
- Cryodestruction - treatment by applying liquid nitrogen to the papilloma.
- A radio wave treatment method that involves the use of a radio knife. This method is painless and quite effective.
Dermatovenerologist Natalya Anatolyevna Ryzhkova tells about the electrocoagulation procedure:
- The use of a laser. This method is today the most popular, because it not only eliminates pathology, but also prevents the development of relapses.
- Treatments by surgical excision of the papilloma when a scalpel is used to remove the formation. This technique is used to identify papillomas with a high probability of tissue degeneration into a malignant tumor. After surgery, men have scars and scars.
The treatment of a virus with high oncogenicity deserves special attention, since almost 70% of patients diagnosed with intestinal cancer or organs of the reproductive system had a history of detecting the papilloma virus. In this case, symptomatic therapy of the virus is used, which makes it possible to suppress the manifestations of its vital activity, since there is no special treatment for the disease.
Types and classification of human papillomavirus
Numerous studies have identified more than 100 types of virus.
Some of them do not pose a serious threat to health, but some of them must be taken with the utmost seriousness, since they can cause the development of malignant tumors.
Oncogenic classification of the virus is divided into 3 types:
- 1st group (1, 2, 3, 4, 5 subspecies of HPV is a non-oncogenic group that does not cause the development of tumors),
- 2nd group (6, 11, 42, 43, 44 HPV has a low level of risk of cancer, but mutations are possible with other factors in which the risk increases),
- 3rd group (HPV 16, 18, 31, 33, 35, 39, 45, 51, 52, 56, 59, 68 are highly active in the development of cancer cells, most often bladder cancer in men).
In any case, it is important to understand what type of virus the body is infected with, for further steps in treatment.
Such formations grow deep into the epithelium or skin, so sometimes they are poorly visible during examinations. They can be located both under the surface of the integument and penetrate to a sufficient depth. They have a leg or spine, which over time tend to lengthen.
Endophytes are represented by intraepithelial warts that affect the deeper layers of the dermal tissue. Such warts are most often found in the groin. They have a convex tip, smooth edges and a color that does not differ from the rest of the skin. After the appearance, they do not cause pain, itching, or other discomfort. In addition to the inguinal zone, they can be localized on the feet or skin of the palms.
Danger to women in contact with the HPV carrier
Papillomavirus is more dangerous for women than for men. The oncogenic factor is rare in men. Often, an infected person is a “repository” of infection.
The greatest risk of papillomavirus for women is that sometimes an infection leads to the development of a cancer of the cervix. This result is not possible with all types of infection. The most dangerous are 16 and 18 types of papillomavirus. In 70% of all cases of cancer of the uterus, these types of virus are the “culprits”.
In addition, due to infection, the development of a malignant tumor in other places is possible. The connection between the virus and cancer of the vulva, oropharynx and anus has been proven.
Why often a man is only a carrier of the virus
The female and male bodies are equally affected by HPV. Men are more likely to transmit the disease than face external symptoms. This is difficult to explain, the stronger sex is prone to the occurrence of viral formations in the groin area.
Women are subject to changes in the body. A decrease in the natural defense in women is observed before each menstruation, at the stage of hormonal imbalance, during pregnancy.For this reason, women often experience signs of candidiasis. It doesn’t matter for the development of cancer. The main factor is damage to the cervical epithelium in the erosion zone (non-healing wounds), HPV is introduced and feels quite comfortable. Erosion is converted to dysplasia, HPV accompanies the process of malignancy of the cervix.
A man is less likely to contract papillomavirus, since the structure of the genital organ ensures the integrity of the skin. The penis suffers less from friction during contact than the female vagina. The exception is passive homosexuals, whose risk of infection is higher than that of women.
HPV is considered a rather insidious disease, due to the fact that it can not make itself felt for a very long time, without causing characteristic symptoms and lead to the development of a cancerous tumor. Therefore, doctors recommend that men observe some preventive measures:
- Avoid random sexual intercourse and always use a condom in such cases.
- Get vaccinated against papilloma virus. This vaccine has appeared recently, so few people know about it. Vaccination consists of 3 injections at regular intervals. However, the vaccine can protect a man only from certain types of virus.
Urologist Karaman Sergeyevich Abramov talks about male intimate hygiene:
- Periodically get tested for HPV.
- Observe intimate hygiene, do not use other people's objects: towels, underwear, sharp objects.
It is almost impossible to completely cure the disease, however, getting rid of its main manifestations is quite real. To do this, you need to strengthen the immune system, avoid accidental sexual relations, abandon bad habits, and consult a doctor in a timely manner if any tumors are found on your body.
Is there a diagnosis to detect HPV in men?
To date, there are several stages of the diagnosis of papillomavirus:
- Visual examination by a doctor.
- The collection of blood and secretions from the penis for research in the laboratory.
Types of diagnostic methods:
- DNA hybridization (Digene-Test).
- PCR (polymerase chain reaction).
You can check your penis, scrotum or the area around the anus for any abnormality. If you find warts, blisters, inflammation, ulcers, white spots or other abnormal areas on the penis, you should consult a doctor. This is best done even if suspicious areas do not cause pain.
How is HPV transmitted in men?
Papillomavirus is the most common disease leading to infection of the genital tract. Most who have a full sexual life become infected with HPV. However, in many cases, the infection “disappears” on its own in a year or two. Moreover, some people become infected several times during their lives. Sexual contact can be either vaginal, oral or anal.
Regardless of how the human papillomavirus was transmitted to a man, his symptoms can appear only after a few years. Therefore, it is not always possible to understand when the infection occurred. And anyone who is sexually active can become infected.
Papillomatosis often manifests itself in men in the form of the formation of genital warts, which have a light pink or pale brown hue. Outwardly, growths resemble inflorescences of cauliflower.
Condylomas grow in the area of the anus, the glans penis, on the foreskin, frenulum, less often form on the inner surface of the thighs and pubis. They cause such unpleasant symptoms as:
- pain during the bowel movement, intercourse,
- pain, itching,
- discomfort during ejaculation or urination.
Neoplasms have a rough surface, they are often injured, and therefore a secondary infection joins the HPV.
How to Get Rid of Papillomavirus or Treating a Disease
Despite the high level of development of medicine, a single drug that can cope with the papilloma virus does not exist. Treatment should be comprehensive, moreover, if a man is a carrier of the virus from the oncogenic group, his state of health should be constantly monitored. First of all, papillomas that develop on the skin and mucous membranes of the body are removed surgically - a lot of virions (virus particles) accumulate in them.
For this purpose, a conventional scalpel, as well as radio waves, electrocoagulation, laser and other methods can be used. After removal of neoplasms of the papillomavirus, the turn of systemic therapy begins, which increases the resistance of the man's body to a viral infection: funds are prescribed that strengthen the immune system, vitamin complexes, interferon.
There is no single treatment regimen suitable for each patient - how to treat the papillomavirus will be decided individually - all drugs against it are prescribed in various dosages depending on the type of virus, the severity of its manifestations, the immunity of the man, individual characteristics and many other factors.
Methods for the diagnosis of human papillomavirus in men
A diagnostic study is an important step in the treatment of HPV. Thanks to timely diagnosis, it is possible to determine not only the presence of HPV, but also to recognize its type, concentration or load on the immune system.
Diagnostic measures begin with an examination in the urology office. In the presence of growths of the anogenital zone, the doctor will easily recognize HPV.
To confirm the diagnosis, the patient is prescribed tests for laboratory research. A smear for PCR and blood for ELISA is subject to study.
The primary analysis for detecting HPV is cell collection. The material in men is scraping the epithelium from the urethra. The doctor inserts a special probe into the urethral canal, after removing the biomaterial, puts it on a glass slide and sends it to the laboratory. To obtain reliable information, a screening and polymerase chain reaction method is carried out. In the laboratory, a Digene test is performed.
Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) is carried out by studying the blood. To confirm the diagnosis, a specific antigen is detected - a protein that is produced by the immune system in response to infection activity.
Histological examination is performed with suspected oncology. A biopsy sample is a fragment of a removed condyloma. The structure of tissues is being studied. The method allows you to identify changes in a man in the early stages.
Is there a cure or cure for papillomavirus?
There are no drugs for this virus. There is no treatment technology (medications and drugs are not able to completely destroy the cells of the pathogen).
However, there are ways to get rid of the problems that HPV causes in men.
Genital warts can be eliminated by drugs, surgery, or freezing. Some of these methods will require a doctor visit. Others can be implemented independently. None of these options are the best. However, they may return a few months after treatment, so several treatments may be required.
If warts are not treated, they can either pass by themselves, or remain in the same condition, or grow in number or quantity. They will not turn into cancer.
Cancer of the penis, anus and oropharynx can be eliminated by surgical intervention, radiation therapy and chemotherapy. Often, two or more treatments are used together. Patients can decide with their doctor which treatment options are best for them.
The appearance of warts of various types can also signal papillomatosis. The growths affect not only the genitals of the man, but grow on the feet, skin of the upper and lower extremities, face, neck, body. Doctors distinguish three main types of warts due to virus activity:
- flat or vulgar (formed on the back of the palms, have dimensions up to 0.5 cm in diameter),
- filiform or “hanging” nevi (grow in the armpits, eyelids, back, neck, chest),
- cystic or mosaic (localized on the feet).
The most effective measure to prevent HPV infection is vaccination. The "young fighter's course" for the body includes three injections, which are carried out every six months. Two vaccines are allowed in Russia - gardasil and cervarix, which differ in composition: papillomavirus proteins of types 16 and 18 are present in cervarix, while gardasil can protect against HPV types 6, 11, 16 and 18, however, on the recommendation of WHO, men can only be given Gardasil vaccine, since Cervarix did not pass clinical trials on the representatives of the stronger sex.
The drug can only be administered intramuscularly in the thigh or shoulder. When injected into the gluteal muscles, there is a high risk of getting into the nerve of the sciatica or adipose tissue. Occasionally, the introduction of a vaccine provokes a defensive reaction of a man's body - fever, headache, weakness.
However, papillomavirus, although a dangerous disease, is treatable. In the end, with appropriate treatment, the development of the virus can be suppressed and all its symptoms can be completely removed, depriving the disease of any chance of a relapse. However, only an experienced dermatologist can select a course of treatment after a full examination of a man. Watch your body, at the slightest doubt go to the doctor and be healthy!
In the next video, the doctor talks about the papillomavirus:
Methods for treating HPV in men
HPV treatment consists of a set of measures that are aimed at suppressing the activity of infection and restoring the immune system. Therapy includes antiviral, immunostimulating, vitamin preparations and removal of growths.
A popular method for getting rid of warts is hardware treatment:
- laser excision - burning out the growth with a laser beam is carried out,
- cryodestruction - destruction of papilloma tissue with liquid nitrogen,
- diathermoelectrocoagulation - burning due to electric current,
- radio wave removal method - excision with a radio knife.
Removal in men can be carried out by exposure to pharmaceutical drugs. The drugs are intended for home use. Most of them cauterize papillomas, some have not only keratolytic, but also antiviral effects.
Effective antiviral agents for combating HPV are:
- Allokin Alpha,
The drug is prescribed by the attending physician individually. The physician needs to evaluate the condition of the patient and the characteristics of his body. Self-selection of drugs is undesirable.
Are there any prevention and ways to reduce the chances of getting an HPV?
Safe and effective virus vaccine (Gardasil) can protect boys and men from the types that cause most types of cancer of the anus and genital warts. It is done in three stages for six months.
Condoms (if used during every sexual intercourse, from beginning to end) may lower the chances of infecting a partner or getting infected yourself. This also reduces the risk of HPV-related diseases. However, it is worth remembering that you can infect those areas that are not protected by a condom. That is why the latter is not able to provide absolute protection against the human papillomavirus.
Since this virus is so common and usually invisible, the only way to defend yourself for sure is to not have sexual contact in principle.
Types of HPV in men
Types of the virus are a kind of "subspecies" of infection. They are designated by the next numbers assigned as they are identified. The main types of anogenital warts, which are detected in 90% of HPV cases, are not oncogenic. These are 11 and 6 "subspecies". However, they are able to provoke the occurrence of benign formations in the airways, leading to respiratory papillomatosis.
Penis oncology was detected during the manifestation of 7 types of HPV: 16, 18 and 31, 33, 56 and 66, as well as 70.
Papillomas on the penis and groin
On the penis, genital warts are most often diagnosed, in the groin, doctors note such manifestations of HPV as bowenoid papulosis.
The growths with it have a dense structure, slightly rise above the surface of the dermis, they are pinkish, yellowish or white, do not cause discomfort. They grow in the anus, urethra.
Explicitly protrude above the general level of the integumentary layer and are characterized by external growth.
External outgrowths are divided into:
- Papules. These growths slightly rise above the epithelium and form flat structures with an uneven top. In color, they sometimes do not differ from the skin, and sometimes they are slightly darker than the surrounding tissues. Mostly localized on the soles of the feet, on the face and trunk.
- Flat condylomas. Characterized by rapid growth. Their appearance is accompanied by severe itching and burning. When palpating, they are found to be quite solid outgrowths. In the last stages, flat condylomas cause significant damage to surrounding tissues.
- Genital warts. Reminiscent of columns rising above the level of the mucosa. The most common place of occurrence is the glans penis and coronary sulcus. Less commonly, the trunk of the penis, perianal zone or rectum is affected. Condylomas can be located alone, but can form large groups. Sometimes their presence is accompanied by a sharp putrid odor.
In addition to endophytic and exophytic forms, there is also a mixed species - Bushke-Levenshtein formations. It is characterized by rapid growth in two directions - above the level of the skin and with penetration into the deep-lying layers. They are always significant in size and cause periodic relapses.
All types of growths can be single or group. At the same time, there is a direct tendency to a deterioration in the condition of a man and an increase in discomfort with an increase in the area of damage. Significant groups can break, bleed, attach secondary infections, and get wet.
Can vaccination help?
If you are 26 years old or less, an HPV vaccine is suitable for you, which can protect you from the types of viruses that usually cause problems. A vaccine (Gardasil) can prevent four common types of human papillomavirus (types 6, 11, 16 and 18).
The vaccine protects against infection, but is not a remedy for the already acquired papilloma virus or the disease caused by it. It is most effective when done to a guy before his first sexual contact (that is, until the moment when he could become infected).
The vaccine is safe for all men under 26 years of age, but it is most effective when done at a younger age.
The vaccine is very effective. It does not have any serious side effects. The most common side effect is soreness in the hand.
Studies have shown that a vaccine can protect men from genital warts and anus cancer.
According to the course of the disease, its following forms are distinguished:
- Latent. The form does not have symptoms, external manifestations, the ailment is hidden, it can only be detected with the help of laboratory tests.
- Subclinical. Signs of illness are erased.
- Clinical. The infection has classic signs, characterized by the appearance of growths of various types.
The first form of the disease is most often diagnosed.
HPV also has several stages of development, which are manifested in the formation on the skin:
- Anogenital warts (genital warts, spots, papules, Bowen’s disease, giant warts, Bushke-Levenshtein, bowenoid papulosis).
- Extragenital papillomas and warts. Lesions occur on the skin in the form of flat, plantar warts, verruciform epidermodysplasia and other neoplasms. Also, growths are found on the mucous membranes in the mouth, eyes, and larynx.
- Dysplasia and precancerous condition.
- Oncological formations on the anus, penis, anal region.
Manifestations and Symptoms
The appearance of the first symptoms means the end of the incubation period of the infection.
Warts or condylomas form in several stages:
- in the lesion there is a slight inflammation and itching,
- within a few days, the skin or epithelium is covered with a small rash with or without liquid contents,
- tubercles or warts gradually increase in length or width,
- the appearance in the immediate vicinity of new rashes, which also turn into neoplasms.
The location of the lesion foci depends on the way the pathogen enters the body and on the genetic set of the strain. Localization can vary greatly:
- most often - the penis,
- the inner cavity of the urethra,
- the epithelium of the oral cavity,
- torso (back and sides),
- feet and hands
- mucous membranes of the eyes.
In the event that the neoplasm grows significantly inside the urethra, dysuria, bifurcation of the stream during urination and frequent urge to visit the toilet can be observed.
With the formation of such structures in the rectum, bleeding after bowel movements can be observed.
In addition to neoplasms, the following symptoms may be present:
- severe itching in the lesion,
- a feeling of heaviness in the perineum,
- weeping outgrowths,
- unpleasant putrefactive odor of the affected areas.
A man can feel fatigue, fatigue, severe headache, fever and other signs of severe intoxication.
When papillomas are localized on a member, sex becomes painful, which makes it necessary to avoid sexual intercourse.
Often there is a simultaneous infection with various HPV strains, which exacerbates the clinical picture and makes the symptoms as complete as possible.
I just found out that my partner has HPV ... What does this mean for my health?
Partners usually infect each other. If you have been with your partner for a long time, you are most likely already infected. Most sexually active adults acquire this virus at least once during their lifetime. Although HPV is common, the health problems it causes are rare.
Condoms can reduce your chances of getting an HPV infection and have a medical condition associated with it if you use it during every sexual intercourse, from the very beginning to the very end.
You should consider discussing vaccination with your doctor if you are under 26 years old. But keep in mind that the only one hundred percent way not to get infected is not to have sex in principle.
If your partner has genital warts, you should not have sex until they disappear or are removed. You should check your penis for any abnormalities.
If you find something unusual, you should contact a clinic specializing in sexually transmitted diseases.
From the normal state of a person to the development of a cancerous tumor, several stages pass after infection. The intermediate stages, which are called dysplasia, are treatable. Often, the method of removal by excision of the affected area is used. In many cases, this is done using a radio knife. Then a histological examination is performed. Surgical intervention is performed correctly if, after treatment, papillomavirus is not detected. This occurs in 95% of cases. In this case, no complications of HPV in men, as well as symptoms, and even more serious consequences, do not occur.
In addition to the radio knife, the following can be used:
- cryodestruction - liquid nitrogen is used,
- diathermocoagulation - the use of low currents,
The tactics of therapy are determined only by the attending physician. If atypical cells are detected, not only the neoplasm is removed, but also a partially adjacent area. This is done in order to prevent the growth of the affected area.
Benign papillomas (condylomas) with localization on the genitals are removed not only due to cosmetic reasons. This is necessary to reduce the risk of infection of the sexual partner.
What does this mean for our relationship?
A person can be infected many years before it is detected or causes health problems. So there is no way to find out if the virus was transmitted from the partner to you, or whether it was transmitted to it from you. The virus is not a sign that you or your partner had sex with someone else.
Now there is no effective drug therapy aimed at getting rid of the virus. There are many recommendations of renowned world-class doctors that prescribe the use of immunomodulators. However, such drugs (along with immunostimulants) used in Russia are not used in other countries. There are also drugs produced abroad, but they are intended only for the CIS countries.
Is it possible to use folk methods
It must be understood that homeopathy and such alternative methods of treatment as the use of herbs, sea buckthorn oil, tampons with honey are not effective for a viral infection. It is necessary to remember which doctor a man should contact when manifesting signs of HPV: this doctor is called a dermatovenerologist (dermatologist, venereologist).
I just discovered that I have genital warts ... What does this mean for me and my partner?
The presence of genital warts is a problem that is not always easy to cope with, but this is not a threat to health.
Since they can be easily transmitted to a sexual partner, you should tell them about their presence and avoid sexual activity until the warts disappear or are removed.
Important: You and your partner should take a test for other sexually transmitted diseases.
When used during every sexual intercourse, latex condoms can reduce the chances of transmitting genital warts to a partner.
It is important that sexual partners discuss their health and the risk of sexually transmitted infections. Be healthy!
These methods quickly alleviate the patient’s condition with HPV in case of large foci of lesion, overgrowth in the area of the urethra or anus, because after reaching a certain size, warts and warts lose their ability to heal.
It is possible to eliminate neoplasms using the following methods:
- Surgical excision. Requires local, and often complete anesthesia. After removal of formations, the cavity is sutured with a surgical suture. Previously, surgical excision was the main way to solve this problem, but due to frequent postoperative bleeding and complications, the method is now resorted to in rare cases.
- Cryodestruction. Outgrowths are affected by liquid nitrogen, which freezes the cells of nodules, during which tissue proteins are destroyed. After this, the heads dry out and fall off. A positive point is the lack of need for anesthesia and the complete purity of the skin without scarring after healing.
- Laser Therapy The technique resembles a cosmetic procedure. The effect of anesthesia is most often achieved when applying a special topical cream. The device points the laser to the affected area, and the beam acts destructively on the leg or root of the tumor. The disadvantages of the method are soreness, high price and the frequent occurrence of scars or scars after the procedure.
- Electrocoagulation This method is affordable but painful. In order to reduce these manifestations, they do local anesthesia, but sensitivity is still present. Under the influence of current, a high temperature is created in unwanted cells, which causes cauterization. After a few days, scabs remain, which fall off with the formation of scars.
- Radiosurgery. The radio wave type electrode eliminates large and medium growths with pre-treatment of the skin with antiseptic agents. This technology is the most modern and non-contact, which virtually eliminates complications. Traceless wound healing is observed in record time - per day. The only minus of the technique is the high cost.
- Chemical type coagulation. The methodology has limitations in application and is suitable only for medium-sized mergers. Cell death occurs after contact with a potent chemical based on highly concentrated alkalis or acids. Since a chemical burn is provoked at the site of exposure, scars and scars appear after the procedure.
Treatment cannot be limited to destructive methods, since after their independent use in almost 30% of cases, relapse occurs after a certain time. Therefore, radical methods must necessarily be supplemented with medications.
These methods include getting rid of small benign growths caused by HPV. Therapy with the use of pharmacy drugs can be carried out on an outpatient basis under the supervision of a physician. It is aimed at eliminating small benign growths caused by HPV, stopping the virus and improving the immunity of men. For this, such groups of drugs are prescribed:
- Pharmacy medicines for the treatment of growths of necrotic action. Over a certain number of days, it is necessary to apply the agent on a wart or warts in a precise manner, avoiding the ingress or spreading of the medicine on healthy tissues. After the prescribed course, a moxibustion break is made, after which the course is repeated again if the growth has not fallen off. The means used for these purposes are Epigen, Panavir, Kondilin, etc.
- Antiviral drugs. They are used pointwise or orally for systemic effects on the whole body. The course length is determined by the attending physician. For antiviral effects, Realidiron, Acyclovir, Fenistil, etc. are prescribed.
- Adaptogens and immunomodulators. These drugs perform the function of preventing relapse and are prescribed after the use of antiviral agents. Cycloferon, Podophyllin, Viferon, Likopid, Immunomax have a significant effect.
Sometimes, multivitamin complexes are prescribed in parallel with taking immunomodulators.
Permanent immune protection after the transferred human papillomavirus is not produced, therefore, after the next contact with a sick person, infection occurs again.
At the end of treatment for high oncogenic papillomavirus, repeated tests should be taken with an interval of 3 months, and in case of low oncogenicity - once a year.
The occurrence of spots with a velvety surface, uneven borders that are located on the skin and mucous membranes signals an ailment. Neoplasms on the dermis have a grayish-brownish tint, those that arise on the mucous membranes are painted in a bright red color. In young people, spots form in the area of the hands, on the head and penis. They are caused by 16, 18, 31 and 34 types of virus. They are dangerous in that they can degenerate into squamous cell carcinoma.
The disease is manifested by the formation of numerous papules that have a smooth surface, uneven edges that form on the head of the penis or its body. It is diagnosed at any age. It occurs due to infection with 16, 18, 34, 39, 40, 42, 45 type of pathogenic microorganism. The disease is considered benign, rarely transformed into oncology. Prone to regressions.
Types of high oncogenicity viruses can cause cancer. The development of oncology is preceded by Bowen's disease, Bowenoid papulosis, Keir erythroplasia, obliterans balanitis. The first neoplasms on the penis often go unnoticed and gradually grow deep into the epithelium. The following symptoms help to suspect the development of an ailment:
- the formation of fistulas with pus,
- the appearance of ulcers
- uneven skin surface, uneven staining,
- temperature, general weakness, swollen lymph nodes.
The method is quite new, but has already proven to be effective. It consists in vaccination with special drugs of a quadrivaccine with the commercial names Cervarix or Gardasil. This vaccine is not active against all strains, but is effective against the four main ones that cause the growth of growths into malignant structures.
Vaccination is undertaken before the moment of illness only in healthy people, if a man has already contracted HPV, then vaccination is useless.
The vaccine contains purified antigens against the papilloma virus, which provide the occurrence of specific immunity. The effect of the vaccine lasts for 4.5 years after the introduction of the drug, while it is approved for use from 9 years old with the possibility of repeated use at any older age.
Vaccination is carried out in 3 stages, 2 and 6 months after the first injection.
To prevent the disease, the following measures must be observed:
- mandatory use of barrier contraceptives (it must be remembered that these funds do not guarantee complete safety, but significantly reduce the risk of developing the disease),
- compliance with personal hygiene and sanitation requirements,
- the presence of a permanent sexual partner,
- systematic examination by an andrologist once a year,
- increase the body's immune forces,
- rapid cure of pathologies of the pelvic organs.
In addition, it is necessary to exclude poor nutrition, stressful situations, ensure a normal rest.
Compliance with all the rules of prevention will help to maintain health and prevent the development of serious consequences.
What is dangerous HPV for men?
The pathogenic microorganism threatens with serious consequences in the form of the development of oncology. The growths located on the mucous membranes of the nose, mouth and throat make breathing difficult.
Warts and condylomas are often injured, bleed, which causes a risk of secondary infection. In addition, they disrupt the reproductive function of men, complicate the process of urination and bowel movement.
HPV treatment in men
Treatment of papillomatosis is a time-consuming process, the patient should be patient. Combination therapy is often prescribed.
A separate group among patients are HIV-infected men and patients who underwent organ transplantation. It is most difficult to treat HPV.
You can cope with the disease by taking immunostimulants together with antiviral drugs. Immunotherapy is effective in numerous growths that have a high oncogenic risk.
Doctors prescribe drugs such as:
Modern medicine offers several ways to get rid of papillomas and warts with the help of devices:
- Laser removal. The device removes the growth in layers, after the procedure there are no scars and scars, the manipulation is almost painless.
- Electrocoagulation Warts are removed by exposure to high-frequency current.
- Radio waves. The growths on the skin are removed with a radio knife, the procedure takes little time, is painless.
- Cryodestruction. Neoplasms are cauterized with liquid nitrogen. After the procedure, a small blister forms on the growth site, which disappears within 7-10 days.
To get rid of papillomas at home, people most often use the following folk remedies:
- Celandine juice. With a cotton swab dipped in juice, the growth is lubricated daily. A week later, he disappears.
- Essential oils. Tea tree or eucalyptus oil is smeared with papillomas every day, but no more than three times. Manipulation is repeated until the wart falls off.
- Garlic and baby fat cream. The head of peeled garlic is rubbed and mixed with the same amount of cream. The resulting mixture is applied to the growth twice a day.
Any remedy should be used only after consulting a doctor, since allergic reactions may occur.
It is completely impossible to get rid of the virus. Once in the body, it remains there forever, but taking medication can put it into a sleeping state, making it safe for the person and others.
Removing growths will rid the skin of cosmetic defects. Eliminating them with modern methods does not lead to relapse.
Prevention of infection by a pathogenic microorganism is as follows:
- Lack of promiscuous sexual intercourse.
- The use of barrier contraception.
- Maintaining a healthy lifestyle, giving up bad habits.
- Personal hygiene.
- Refusal to visit baths, saunas, pools with a dubious reputation.
Modern medicine has developed vaccinations against HPV using the drugs Gardasil and Cervarix. They are held between the ages of 9 to 15 years.
HPV video for men
Information about this ailment from a practicing dermatovenerologist from the Moscow Doctor Clinic can be found by watching the following video:
The disease in question is quite insidious and may not be felt for a long time. It is treated difficult. HPV has dangerous consequences, therefore it is easier to prevent by observing certain preventive measures and strengthening the body's protective functions.