Skip to Content
Home > Patients & Visitors > Health Library > Physical Exam for Genital Warts (Human Papillomavirus) for Men
A visual exam of the penis and anus is most
important to diagnose
genital warts in men. A magnifying glass may be used
to help locate abnormal tissue.
A physical exam may be done
A physical exam often is the only test needed to diagnose
genital warts. Some doctors will apply an acetowhite test to make the warts
more visible. Your doctor may apply a vinegar solution (weak acetic acid) to
the skin to show the difference between normal and abnormal tissue. A slight
burning sensation may occur when the acetic acid is applied. The acetowhite
test is not routinely recommended to confirm genital warts.
Findings of the physical exam may include the
Genital warts are not found.
But HPV may be
present even when the visual exam does not locate any warts. HPV can be present
in tissue that appears normal.
Genital warts are found on or around the penis, scrotum,
Treatment is based on:
A sample (biopsy) of
tissue may be taken if genital warts cannot be positively diagnosed with a
physical exam. A biopsy can confirm an HPV infection.
Many men do not notice that they
have genital warts, even when the warts are visible.
genital warts does not cure a human papillomavirus (HPV) infection. The virus
may remain inactive in the body after warts are removed. A person treated for
genital warts may still be able to spread the infection. Condoms may help
reduce the risk of getting HPV infection.
Complete the medical test information form (PDF)(What is a PDF document?) to help you prepare for this test.
ByHealthwise StaffPrimary Medical ReviewerSarah Marshall, MD - Family MedicineSpecialist Medical ReviewerKirtly Jones, MD - Obstetrics and Gynecology
Current as ofNovember 14, 2014
Current as of:
November 14, 2014
Sarah Marshall, MD - Family Medicine & Kirtly Jones, MD - Obstetrics and Gynecology
How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.
To learn more, visit Healthwise.org
© 1995-2015 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
Feeling under the weather?
Use our interactive symptom checker to evaluate your symptoms and determine appropriate action or treatment.
Our interactive Decision Points guide you through making key health decisions by combining medical information with your personal information.
You'll find Decision Points to help you answer questions about:
Get started learning more about your health!
Our Interactive Tools can help you make smart decisions for a healthier life. You'll find personal calculators and tools for health and fitness, lifestyle checkups, and pregnancy.
Send Us Your Feedback
North Kansas City Hospital.