Treatment and Prevention of HPV (Human Papillomavirus)

There is no treatment for HPV infection in men. However, most health problems that are caused by HPV are treatable.

Updated: December 21, 2017

HPV also known as Human papillomavirus is the most common sexually transmitted infection which can lead to cancer. Some of the types of HPV associated with genital cancers can lead to cancer of the anus or penis in men although these cancers are not common. HPV can also cause genital warts in men.
Most men who get HPV, develop growths or warts on their penis, testicles, anus, groin and thighs or back of the throat. Most cancers that are found in the back of the throat, including at the base of the tongue and in the tonsils, are HPV related.
The risk of anal cancer is higher in sexually active gay and bisexual men than in men who have sex only with women. Men who have HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) are also at higher risk of getting this cancer.

Treatment for HPV:

There is no treatment for HPV infection in men. However, most health problems that are caused by HPV are treatable.
Genital warts can be treated with prescription medication. They can also be surgically removed or frozen or burned off, depending on the size, location, and shape. Genital warts can go away on their own in some cases. It can also take time for all warts to appear. Therefore early treatment of warts is discouraged by some doctors as a person who treats warts as soon as they appear may need another treatment later on.
If genital warts are not treated, they are unlikely to turn into cancer. Anal, penile, or throat cancers are usually treated with a combination of surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy. The specific treatments depend on the stage of cancer such as how big the tumor is and how far the cancer has spread.
Types of surgical interventions may include:

Cryotherapy:

This method uses liquid nitrogen to freeze the abnormal areas.

Electrocautery:

Electrical current is used to burn the abnormal areas.

Laser therapy:

A light beam removes unwanted tissue.

Interferon injection:

This is rarely used due to the high risk of side effects and cost.

Surgical removal:

Surgery can be done to remove the abnormal areas.

HPV Vaccine for Men:

Most sexually active men and women will contract the HPV virus at some point during their lifetime. Getting vaccinated can lower the risk of getting HPV. The vaccine is given in two doses, 6 to 12 months apart. Catch-up vaccines are recommended for males up to the age of 21 years and females up to 26 years who did not receive the vaccination at a younger age. Gay and bisexual men are encouraged to have the vaccination up to the ages of 26 years.
The HPV vaccine Gardasil is approved for boys and men of ages 9 to 26 years for the prevention of genital warts caused by HPV 6 and HPV 11. Gardasil was also approved for the prevention of anal cancer.
Gardasil 9 is approved for use in males of age 9 to 15 years.  It prevents infection by the same HPV types as Gardasil along with HPV-31, HPV-33, HPV-45, HPV-52, and HPV-58.
The HPV vaccine is safe and effective. No serious side effects have been reported from the vaccine. The HPV vaccine does not prevent other sexually transmitted infections or treat people who have existing HPV infections or HPV-related diseases.

How to Prevent Spreading HPV?

The best way to protect yourself against HPV is to get vaccinated. Although it is recommended that you get vaccinated around age 12, you can still get vaccinated up until age 26. You can also protect yourself and prevent spreading by:

  • limiting your number of sexual partners
  • using condoms correctly and consistently. Condoms can provide some protection against HPV transmission. But they are not 100% effective, since HPV is transmitted primarily by skin-to-skin contact. The virus can still infect the skin uncovered by the condom.
  • avoiding sexual contact with a partner if genital warts are present.


Related Articles

Cavities or Dental Caries: Symptoms and Causes

Cavities or Dental Caries: Symptoms and Causes

Dental caries or cavities also known as tooth decay, is a breakdown of teeth due to acids made by specific types of bacteria.

Bronchitis: Causes,Risk Factors and Symptoms

Bronchitis: Causes,Risk Factors and Symptoms

Bronchitis is an inflammation of the lining of your bronchial tubes, which carry air to and from your lungs. Bronchitis may be either acute or chronic.

9 Home Remedies for Dry Skin

9 Home Remedies for Dry Skin

Cause of dry skin is environmental or other lifestyle conditions, rather than as a result of some skin condition , can be dealt with various home remedies. Here are probably the most generally suggested home remedies for dry skin.

How to Boost IVF Success

How to Boost IVF Success

Are you worried about your chances of pregnancy success with in vitro fertilization (IVF)?

Prostate Gland Disorders

Prostate Gland Disorders

The prostate is a small gland found only in men. It is a part of the male reproductive system and surrounds the urethra (the tube that carries urine out of the body). It is situated just below the bladder and the opening of the vas deferens

Home Remedies for Hives

Home Remedies for Hives

Hives are a red, raised, itchy skin rash that appear suddenly, either as a result of the reaction to certain allergens, or for unknown reasons.

9 Home Remedies for High Cholesterol

9 Home Remedies for High Cholesterol

A bad lifestyle is one of the cause of high cholesterol like having high saturated fats containing food and lack of physical activities.

Colon cancer: Symptoms and signs, Causes and Risk factor, Diagnosis, Staging and Prevention

Colon cancer: Symptoms and signs, Causes and Risk factor, Diagnosis, Staging and Prevention

Colon cancer is cancer of the colon or large intestine which begin as small, noncancerous clumps of cells called adenomatous polyps.