One of the most common sexually transmitted diseases afflicting more than half of the sexually active men at some point or the other around the world is the Human Papillomavirus or HPV. This infection usually affects the genital regions and is one of the major causes of genital cancers. These include anal and penile cancer.
However these cancers are extremely rare and most men usually suffer from less severe symptoms like the appearance of genital warts. In fact it is believed that one percent of the men who are sexually active have genital warts at some or the other point in life. Most of the time symptoms of this viral infection are cured without the need for extensive treatments.
HPV in men is caused by vaginal and anal sex. Since the symptoms of the disease are not apparent, transmission is fairly easy. However if you have genital warts that are caused by HPV then you may notice symptoms like raised or flat growth on the thighs, testicles, penis and anus.
If the infection has progressed to cancer, then you would possibly have no symptoms. Sometimes penile cancer in advanced stages can result in tissue buildup in the penis, skin thickening and sores. Symptoms of anal cancer caused by HPV may result in discharge and anal bleeding along with swollen lymph nodes.
Unfortunately there are no routine tests to diagnose HPV in men. The doctor may diagnose the infection based on the appearance of genital warts. However this test is not really foolproof. While pap tests for HIV positive and bisexual men have been suggested, this has not been brought into effect just as yet.
There is no treatment for HPV and doctors usually treat the symptoms and the health problems that are caused by this Sexually Transmitted Diseases. Genital warts can be cured by medicines. For larger warts surgery or freezing of the warts might be necessary. However these warts may reappear in future. Penile and anal cancer caused by this viral STD can be treated with chemotherapy, radiation therapy and surgery.
Abstinence from sex is the only way of preventing this infection. While in women HPV can be prevented by vaccine, this is not recommended for men. With safe sex and being with a single partner, chances of contacting this life threatening disease can be minimized.