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Avatar universal

How did I get these?

I am married and have been with my husband for 8 years.  Prior to him, I had a few sexual partners, most of which were committed relationships.  I tested positive for HPV about 4 years ago.  This was done via pap smear and the doctor put me on antibiotics and in 6 months re-did the test which was negative.  I had no warts or any other signs of this condition at that time nor before or since.

Last night, I was taking a bath and noticed something odd on my genital area.  When I looked closer, I noticed two areas of "growths" and what look to be, more than likely, warts.  I did notice they were in the same area where I recently cut myself while trimming, but I am thinking that is irrelevant.   I am freaking out.  Did my husband cheat?  I know that information says that this can lay dormant for a while, but 8 years????  If I caught a new strand of HPV, does that mean my husband has cheated?  What should I say to him?  

I plan to see my ob/gyn as soon as possible.  What are the most effective and quickest treatments?  Can I request to have them frozen off?  How quickly will they go away?  Will he and I give it back and forth?  How long should we wait to have sex after my warts are gone to be sure that we don't?   Should he get treated too?

I scared and completely mortified to discuss this with my husband and my doctor.  
12 Responses
300980 tn?1194933000
MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL
Welcome to our Forum.  Before we start addressing lots of questions about HPV (wart infections) due to long past relationships, I think you need to be sure of what is there.  What you describe could very easily be skin tags, a reaction to the cuts you describe or other non-STD problems.  I would ask your doctor.

As far as treatment, almost no matter what they are, one of the fastest ways to make these things go away is to have them frozen off.  This will probably make them go away no matter what they are as the freezing destroys the tissue and allows normal tissue to grow back

Hope these comments are helpful.  EWH
Avatar universal
Also, if he did give me a new strain, and it was from an extramarital relationship, how long would it have been for me to now be symptomatic?  

I do not think he has cheated, but I am not sure.  
Avatar universal
They look alot like the pictures of warts on the internet...I am so sick to my stomach I can hardly stand it.  I have an appointment this afternoon.  In reading, it seems more likely to be warts, because I have had 2 abnormal paps in years past.  THere were never any external signs.  They did pop up very quickly and are quite large.  Last week, there was nothing and now I have 2 very large "clusters".  If it were skin tags what would they look like?
300980 tn?1194933000
MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL
Skin tags can be similar in appearance to warts and it would be unusual for warts to appear over the course of just a week.  Furthermore, the type of HPV which causes waaaarts is typically different from the type that causes abnormal PAP smears.  EWH
Avatar universal
The doctor says they look like warts and did not think they were skin tags.  She took a culture and said I'd get results in 5 days.  She also said if it's negative that she would biopsy and check for skin cancer?  I have never heard of skin cancer in the vagina?  

She gave me some cream that I am to apply 3 times a week.  I discussed the other options, such a freezing them, but she seemed to think that was extreme and not necessary.  I will wait for the results, but if I read the information I got with the cream, I will push for the freezing if it turns out these are warts.  I am not willing to keep these little hitchhikers for weeks as the pamphlet says it will take 4-6 weeks for them to go away.  

She stated that it's possible I have had this for a long time and that it's just now showing up.  I did test positive a few years ago for HPV (thus the abnormal pap) but that was not the kind that causes warts.    I have since tested negative.

Is what she is telling me true?  Is it possible I have had this and it took THIS FREAKING LONG to show up?  I find that a little hard to believe given what i have read online.  Everything I have read says it takes 3 weeks to 3 months, not 8 years or longer?    She says my husband and I will not pass this back and forth, is that true?   Will these return like herpes?  
300980 tn?1194933000
MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL
I have to say my approach would be a bit differetn from your dotor's.  As I already said, given your situation, the most direct way to make them go away is probably freezing.  I'm a bit suprised that your doctor did not pick up on your desire to get rid of these ASAP.  Further, I do not know what test was done- there are no culture tests for warts.

As far as the possiblity of warts are concnerned, sometimes they do appear long, long after the infection is acquired or treated.  Even if they do turn out to be warts, for better or worse, at present HPV is a "fact of life" and most people have it or will have it at some point in the future.  there are over 100 different types of HPV infection.  Despite this fact, only a tiny minority of persons with HPV get the consequences of infection (primarily women and primarily cancer and pre-cancerous lesions and PAP smears, as you have been doing are a superb means of reducing risks for canncer).  HPV is the most commonly acquired STD.  Over 85% of sexually active women will have HPV infection at some time in their lives.  The figure for men is less well studied but similar.  

For additional information on this most common of STDs, I would suggest search for other HPV- and wart-related Q&A on this site, as well seeking addition information on sites such as the American Social Health Association web-site (disclosure, Dr. Handsfield and I are both on the Board of ASHA).  

I would try to find out what test was done and/or consider a second opinion with a dermatologist.  EWH
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