Genital Warts: Signs And SymptomsOne of the most common types of sexually transmitted infections is genital warts. 

Almost all sexually active people will become infected by at least one form of human papillomavirus (HPV), the virus that leads to genital warts, at some time in their lives. It is somewhat more likely for women to develop genital warts in comparison to men. 

Genital warts, as the same suggests, impact the moist tissues of the genital region. These warts may appear as small, flesh-hued bumps or have a cauliflower-like appearance. Genital warts are too small to be noticeable in many cases. 

Similar to warts that appear on other areas of the body, genital warts are also caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV). Certain strains of genital HPV can lead to genital warts, while others may cause cancer. Vaccines can offer protection against certain strains of genital HPV. 

Suncoast Skin Solutions, led by board certified dermatologist Dr. Christopher Ewanowski, provides advanced dermatology treatments to patients in Tampa, Brandon, Lutz, Seminole, Riverview, Brooksville, Winter Haven, Daytona Beach, Largo, St. Petersburg, Ocala, Sarasota, Palm Harbor, Central Florida, Florida, and surrounding communities. 


Genital warts occur in various shapes and sizes. Certain people get a few warts, while others develop many warts.

The most common symptoms (what is visible) of these warts are as follows:

  • Tiny, scattered bumps that are skin-colored or slightly darker
  • A cluster of bumps that appear similar to cauliflower
  • Growths in the genital region can be elevated or flat and rough or smooth

Genital warts usually do not have symptoms. At times, the warts may burn, itch, hurt, or bleed. 

Genital warts may appear on the following body areas:


  • Vulva (external female genitals)
  • Vagina
  • Cervix
  • Groin


  • Penis
  • Scrotum
  • Thigh
  • Groin

Females and Males

  • In the throat or mouth following oral sex with an infected individual
  • In or around the anus after engaging in anal sex with a person with HPV

Genital warts are a common sexually transmitted infection, and they can manifest on the genitals, in the pubic region, or in the anal canal. 

Women may experience genital warts on the walls of the vagina, the vulva, the region between the external genitals and the anus, the anal canal, and the cervix. 

In males, these warts may develop on the anus, the shaft or tip or the penis, or the scrotum. In addition, genital warts may also occur in the throat or mouth of a person who has oral sexual contact with an infected individual. 

The signs and symptoms associated with genital warts are as follows:

  • Tiny, flesh-hued, or gray swellings in the genital region
  • Multiple warts close together to take on a cauliflower-like appearance
  • Discomfort or itching in the genital region
  • Bleeding with intercourse

Genital warts can be so tiny and flat that they are not visible to the naked eye. However, these warts may multiply into substantial clusters. 

Risk Factors

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, almost all sexually active individuals will become infected with at least one form of HPV at some point in their lives. The factors that heighten the risk of becoming infected include:

  • Engaging in unprotected sex with multiple partners
  • Having another sexually transmitted infection
  • Having sex with a person whose sexual history is unknown
  • Becoming sexually active at a young age

Dr. Ewanowski’s skin care clinic receives patients from Tampa, Brandon, Lutz, Seminole, Riverview, Brooksville, Winter Haven, Daytona Beach, Largo, St. Petersburg, Ocala, Sarasota, Palm Harbor, Central Florida, Florida, and nearby areas for dermatologic as well as medical spa procedures.

SunCoast Skin Solutions Dermatology offices are located in Tampa / Hillsborough, St. Petersburg / Pinellas County, Brandon, Lutz (2 locations), Winter Haven, Largo, Riverview, Brooksville, Ocala, Largo at Bardmoor, Daytona Beach, Sarasota, and Palm Harbor, Florida. Contact us at 1-844-786-3376 or click here.