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I have only had one outbreak of genital warts. They went away and I haven't seen them again. Am I still a risk for spreading? And if so, what kind of things should I say to my partner? We haven't had sex yet because I don't want to spread anything...

By Anonymous April 4, 2011 - 12:34am
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She did not perform a test. She does visually diagnosed it and then went it got the freeze off stuff (OUCH). I have been tested for HPV and they always came back negative.
I always had my doubts that it was really nothing because I never had had another bump and it did not irritate or grow any larger when it was there. Just never had a true outlet to ask!

September 14, 2011 - 12:17pm
EmpowHER Guest

I have an additional question. 3 years ago I had a small "bump" on the skin below my vagina, almost between the anus and the vagina. I immediately went to the doctor which was planned parenthood. The person I saw ( I am not sure if she was a nurse or doctor) did say it was a genital wart and burned it off. It never came back to this day. I have also had 2 normal pap smears since then and have had sexual intercourse. What does this mean? Was it a false alarm and really was not a wart or did it just go away?

September 14, 2011 - 9:14am
EmpowHER Guest

no, they are what my doctor diagnosed me with. i had no clue what it was. she did not swab me at all. she just visually diagnosed me. i'm not due for my next pap until next month... but i'll be getting one. i was prepared to tell my partner about the warts, but that comment really threw me and i think i'll still be tested for herpes, just in case...

April 7, 2011 - 10:31am
EmpowHER Guest

i'm sorry, i just am completely freaked out... i've been researching hpv for a while now and to think it could possibly be herpes... holy cow. i don't live where i used to anymore, but i guess i'm going to have to go to the doctor now. i'm just unsure what i should be asking for now...

April 7, 2011 - 10:02am
(reply to Anonymous)

Anon, on your original post you said "Genital Warts" is that what your doctor diagnosed you with or is it what it looked like to you? If your doctor diagnosed you with Genital Warts-- then it is not herpes. Herpes and Genital Warts are two different STD's. Genital Warts are caused by HPV, Herpes is caused by the Herpes simplex virus. Did your doctor swab you at any point? or perform a pap smear? Remember you can call her office to verify your diagnosis.

April 7, 2011 - 10:08am
(reply to Rosa Cabrera RN)

Here's a video you may find helpful-- https://www.empowher.com/genital-warts/content/genital-warts-what-are-these-and-what-are-symptoms-dr-grobe

Hope this helps ease you a bit.

April 7, 2011 - 10:17am

Hi Anon,

Genital Warts are caused by a virus called Human Papillomavirus. HPV can go away on its own if left untreated or you can go to the doctor to have it treated with medication. In your case, you've had one outbreak and not seen them again-- this could mean that it resolved on its own. However, just because it resolves on its own and isn't seen, doesn't mean you can't pass it on to your partner.

It is important that you are honest with your boyfriend and explain that at least half of all sexually active people will become infected with the virus that causes genital warts at some point during their lives. HPV is a lot more common than people think it is-- unfortunately, being uneducated about STD is mainly because they are considered so "taboo". The use of condoms can significantly reduce the risk of spreading an STD. Keep in mind that just because you had an outbreak, doesn't mean you still have it as HPV has a tendency to go away on its own. However, it is best to be safe than sorry.

Best Wishes!

April 4, 2011 - 6:03am
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Rosa Cabrera RN)

Thank you Rosa! I thought that with HPV once you got it, you had it for life, so I didn't even think about going back to the doctor to be checked to see if it's still there. She diagnosed me visually, but I've never had another type of test... this might be a stupid question, but how do you test for that strain of HPV if you don't have an outbreak?

April 4, 2011 - 10:40am
(reply to Anonymous)

Not a stupid question at all! In your case, visually is the only way to determine whether you have it or not-- so the genital wart outbreak is why your doctor diagnosed you. The only other test out there is for cervical cancer, where it is done through a Pap Smear. If you were to go back to your doctor today, with no outbreak-- she would only be able to test you for cervical cancer.

April 5, 2011 - 7:01am
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Rosa Cabrera RN)

Unless you've been tested, how do you know if it is HPV? You can't diagnosis a virus based on symptoms. This could easily have been herpes, HSV2 or HSV1, but most commonly HSV2 in the US. You can have herpes, be asymptomatic and still be shedding virus. Regardless, this patient should get tested for both HPV and herpes.

April 7, 2011 - 8:21am
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