You’ve recently noticed a rash developing on your skin, making you wonder, is this HPV?
HPV infections reside within the skin tissue and are transmitted through skin to skin contact. There are over 150 different viral strains of HPV that have evolved to infiltrate different areas within the skin and mucous membranes and are associated with different symptoms and progress to different diseases.
Most HPV Infections are Asymptomatic
Most HPV infections are silent. A person will contract an infection without having any visible symptoms.
In about 90 percent of patients, a healthy immune system will typically develop an immune response to regress the virus within a period of 1 to 2 years.
A small number of people suffer from persistent HPV infections and have an increased risk of developing cancer. However, these infections take many years to develop and through early detection and pap screening, complications rarely develop into malignancies.
Typically, if symptoms do develop, they will either cause visible papilloma’s or warts on the surface of the skin or cause chronic infections that persist within the cell tissue and are only detected through clinical examination like a pap smear.
HPV symptoms may include:
- Genital warts
- Skin warts
- Cancerous or precancerous changes in the cells of the cervix, detected during a pap test.
Some low-risk strains of HPV can cause visible symptoms on the skin like common warts, genital warts, and plane warts.
Genital warts are also known as condylomata acuminate. They are usually caused by HPV types 6 and 11.
The warts appear as a soft, fleshy, cauliflower-like growths that grow in genital areas including the anus and penis. They can be painful, itchy, annoying, and, worst of all, highly persistent. Genital warts may also cause swelling in the genital area and lead to itching and discomfort.
In women, warts often grow on the vulva, the walls of the vagina, or in between the external genitals and the anus. In men, they usually occur on the tip or shaft of the penis.
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Other Warts Caused By HPV
Other warts caused by the HPV infection include plane warts, which tend to show up as small nodules on the hands or face. Plane warts can cause a mild rash on the hands of face during viral regression, but it is uncommon.
Common warts typically show up as irregular shaped rough nodules that occur in multiples. These warts are also most commonly found on the fingers or hands, often featuring small black dots of clotted blood vessels.
How Do I Get Rid of Warts?
Each individual’s immune system responds differently to HPV, so each of us will have a different reaction to the virus as well.
HPV strains that cause warts are classified as low-risk strains because they rarely develop into serious complications like cancer. Most warts will be cleared naturally by a healthy immune system.
Implementing a healthy diet and lifestyle as well as incorporating natural treatments like green-tea extract, found in Papillex, has also been found to improve wart clearance.
Although HPV affects the skin tissue, rashes are not typically a symptom of an HPV infection. As mentioned, some plane warts may present with a rash during viral regression but otherwise it is not a common symptom of an HPV infection.
A rash likely indicates another skin infection, irritation, or sexually transmitted disease and requires further examination by your doctor.