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damage to penis skin with over the counter and apple cider vinegar?

I know i post a lot but my story is a work in progress and i really appreciate all the comments. i would love some proffesional advice on my story since it really is unique and i cannot get very specific answers anywhere.

I self-diagnosed myself with early stage pinkish and flattish warts about a week ago. i had previously soaked them with vinegar and then they turned white and cauliflower shape, and then very slightly raised. I then attacked them with a stick of salicylic acid (in a lip balm container) 40% solution. dabbing them every hour or so for a couple days. then i read that was a bad idea so i stopped that. by now i am sure the skin was nice a soft/weak. I then downgraded my attack to acetic acid in the form of Apple cider vinegar. Duriing the next two days I soaked my whole penis for hours while i was awake and then, using bandaids and little pieces of cotton, I soaked the individual spots. they turned very white at first then VERY DARK and some fell off. lots of irritated skin. one spot looked ulcerated after a while. finally i went to the doctor and told him everything including that i had never been to med school. he was not surprised. I had made a mess. he didnt seem too concerned. he did not know what to think and said to just let things heal.

but I didnt. i was off to the races again soaking and attacking some more for another two days. 2 spots have healed nicely with no problem and 3 are kind of ulcerated and weeping and look very much like herpes or small chancroids. i am very anxious about the semi-infected looking ulcers: yellowish crater, raised reddish rim and a tiny bit of bloodish ooze.

there is no pain anywhere and has never has been any pain the whole time (except a little for the irritated skin and maybe a little at the times when i was pouring acid on my penis). and the unprotected sex was over a month ago so i want to rule out herpes, who doesnt. so, then i finally read somewhere:


-i used 40% solution (the kind for hand warts)!!!-

i kept reading...

"Most drugstore brand wart removers containing salicylic acid are suspended with an acetone base, and can be extremely damaging to the skin"  "...(condysil does not) act to radically destroy the skin which could cause possible ulceration and secondary infection"

so i finally found some proof that improper genital wart treatment can cause ulcers.

anyone have any experience with this? acid burns and ulceration from wart removal?

(i got the ulcers swabbed for herpes just in case)

thanks for your time!

9 Responses
541093 tn?1224674496
Most of the first line theripies and over-the-counter treatment causes burn and ulcerations... You've already done a lot of damage to your genital skin by diagnosing and treating by yourself... You should see a dermatologist for proper diagnoses and treatement before it gets worst, too late and you severely damage your genital skin...
657020 tn?1238041118
Your doctor is right, you need to let it heal.

I don't know about the over the counter wart remover you bought, but Acv treatment for removing warts is great, if you use it properly. Yes, ulcerations, redness, irritation happens when the skin is over exposed to vinegar, whether you have hsv or not. What is your rush to remove the warts? If you have any left, you can always treat them with apple cider vinegar again, once the surrounding skin has healed. Here is a very good link with feedback from 55 people who have used it, along with other various natural remedies. You can read their comments about the treatment and a few of them have had similar situations to yours, either caused by over exposure to acv or not using anything to protect the healthy skin, or both.


My advice is to CEASE any further treatment for genital warts, at least until the skin heals. Buy some triple antibiotic ointment for healing. Also, I don't know where in the world you are, but you can buy a vitamin e stick at walmart for about 96 cents to promote healing of your damaged skin.

Good luck! :)
657020 tn?1238041118
Didn't you mention something at the beginning of all this regarding early removal of genital warts? Something about if you remove them early you can clear the virus? Perhaps that is your rush in removing them? I've done a lot of reading up on hpv, along with other viruses and never have I come across anything that suggested such was true.
Avatar universal
I am not a medical professional, but I believe I am some very direct answers to your question. I'm going to begin by reiterating what Naveed777 said and urge you to never self-diagnose and to see a doctor. If you still have questions (like I did), then asking a wider pool of people may provide you with an opportunity to seek help in a different form of proven treatment. You're already bored now....

1. Genital warts are not, I REPEAT NOT, the same as the warts you get on your hands or many other parts of your body. Genital warts are unique in that they are specifically located in areas that are considered "soft tissue." This soft tissue is located in areas such as the genital area, the anus, internal vaginal tissue, and even the inside of your mouth (although this infections are rare).

2. Because these warts are different, treating them the way you treat other warts is ineffective and can worsen symptoms.

3. Most doctors equate Apple Cider Vinegar treatment of genital warts to other placebo methods. Such as telling kids that if they draw marker on their warts everyday, they will go away. The jury is still out on how much affect placebos really have to stimulate an increased physical response to the virus as a response to impulses of the brain/mind. If symptoms in these people disappeared, it's because their body naturally attacked the virus (which is very common) and eliminated the warts.  Don't go through the hassle and pain of this home remedy.

4. I think several of the other posts about how to deal with your damaged skin are great.

5. I have some of the same questions that AmandaRene has about early treatment and symptomless infections. I would appreciate any information responses on my post. Podofilox Treatment and HPV Prevention.
Avatar universal

Thanks everyone!!!!
657020 tn?1238041118
Apple cider vinegar is not a treatment for the hpv virus, it's a treatment for warts. It's very effective and, when used properly, does not cause pain and discomfort. Many people have told me they prefer acv home treatment to having them frozen at the dr. Don't knock it! :)
ALL warts come from  HPV.
Avatar universal
Common warts ARE an HP type virus but are not directly related to the genital HP warts they are different varieties of the same HP virus.
Avatar universal
Prompt tretment of warts is usually recommended because as time passes, they may grow in size or number which can make treatment more difficult. The HPV virus must be cleared by your immune system though. The vast majority of people clear the virus in 2 years and the median time is much shorter than that.

Warts on your hands and especially on your feet are surrounded by tough skin. The warts themselves are often rough as well making treatments for these warts pretty crude. As you found out, over-the-counter treatments can harm sensitive (and thin) genital skin. They don't tend to be all that effective anyway, so using them does a great deal of harm with little chance of benifit. Thankfully, your skin should heal, but keep everything clean and be on the lookout for infection. Consider another visit to the doctor if you are unsure.

Generally, I think it is best to follow follow doctor's advice for your specific situation. There are a lot of home remedies for warts, but there is no proof that they work. If these remedies worked, doctors would recommend them. The fact that most people are able to clear the virus without treatment, makes it easy for them to beleive that home remedies are having an impact, Though, while it may not be effective, vinegar shouldn't harm your skin (assuming it is applied after you have healed).

Avatar universal
i have recently discovered what i thought was a genital wart so i tried the acv method and i left a relatively big piece of tissue paper soaked in acv and left it over night strapped to the base of my penis. I woke up the next morning and the soaked area has turned the skin grey/yellow and black. the next day that layer of black has been removed and it is has a white layer...i have bought silver nitrate gauze and covered it...i have not seen my girlfriend in a year and she arrives in 10 days....am i scared for life?i am paralyzed with indecision...could anyone give me some advice as my mental state is not in a good way?i am 19 and i am in the middle of exams.....
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