Genital warts (condylomata acuminata) must be treated and controlled carefully because of their frequent relapses and the risk of malignancy. Treatment is by destruction of the lesions. The most frequently used treatment for external warts is podophyllin 20% in ethanol which is applied to the affected area and then carefully washed off after 4 to 6 hours. The effectiveness of this method of treatment varies between 20 and 98%, with the warts generally disappearing in 3 to 4 days. If podophyllin is ineffective or is contraindicated (e.g. in pregnancy), other measures such as surgical removal, electrocautery, cryosurgery or laser treatment can be used independently or in combination. Other treatments that have been used include topical application of 5-fluorouracil and intralesional or systemic use of interferons.
Patients and their sexual partners should be followed for several months after treatment. A Papanicolaou smear should be obtained from women prior to treatment because of the association of human papilloma virus infection with cervical invasive neoplasia.
This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.
Buy single article
Instant access to the full article PDF.
Price includes VAT (USA)
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.
Bahmer FA, Tang DE, Payeur-Kirsch M. Treatment of large condyomata of the penis with the Neodymium-YAG-laser. Acta Dermatovenereologica (Stockholm) 64: 361–363, 1984
Balucani M, Zellers DD. Podophyllum resin poisoning with complete recovery. Journal of the American Medical Association 189: 639–640, 1964
Clark ANG, Parsonage MJ. A case of podophyllum poisoning with involvement of the nervous system. British Medical Journal 2: 1155–1157, 1957
Duus BR, Philipsen T, Christensen JD, Lundvall F, Søndergaard J. Refractory condylomata acuminata: a controlled clinical trial of carbon dioxide laser versus conventional surgical treatment. Genitourinary Medicine 61: 59–61, 1985
Gross G. Condylomata acuminata und andere Papillomavirusassoziierte Erkrankungen der Urogenital- und Analregion. Immunitie und Infektion 12: 261–265, 1984
Hasumi K, Kobayashi T, Ata M. Topical idoxuridine for genital condyloma acuminata. Lancet 1: 968, 1984
MMWR. Condyloma acuminatum — United States, 1966–1981. Current trends. Mortality and Morbidity Weekly Report 32: 396–408, 1983
Olsen EA, Trofotter KF, Gall SA, Medoff JR, Hughes CE, et al. Human lymphoblastoid interferon-alpha in the treatment of refractory condyloma acuminata. Journal of Clinical Research 33: 673A, 1985
Oriel JD. Natural history of genital warts. British Journal of Venerological Diseases 47: 1–13, 1971
Sait MA, Garg BR. Condylomata acuminata in children: report of four cases. Genitourinary Medicine 61: 338–342, 1985
Schirren CG. Schwere Allgemeinvergiftung nach örtlicher Anwendung von Podophyllinspiritus bei spitzen Condylomen. Hautarzt 17: 321–322, 1966
Schonfeld A, Schattuer A, Crespi M, Levavi M, Shoham J, et al. Intramuscular human interferon-beta injections in the treatment of condyloma acuminata. Lancet 1: 1038, 1984
Silva PD, Micha JP, Silva DG. Management of condyloma acuminatum. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology 13: 457–463, 1985
Syrjänen KJ. Current concepts of human papillomavirus infections in the genital tract and their relationship to intraepithelial neoplasia and squamous cell carcinoma. Obstetrical and Gynecological Surgery 39: 252–265, 1984
von Krogh G. Podophyllotoxin for condylomata acuminata. Sexually Transmitted Diseases 8: 179–186, 1981
Ward JW, Clifford WS, Monaco AR. Fatal systemic poisoning following podophyllin treatment of condyloma acuminatum. Southern Medical Journal 47: 1204–1206, 1954
About this article
Cite this article
Eskelinen, A., Mashkilleyson, N. Optimum Treatment of Genital Warts. Drugs 34, 599–603 (1987). https://doi.org/10.2165/00003495-198734050-00006
- Sexual Partner
- Genital Wart
- Human Papilloma Virus Infection
- Condyloma Acuminata