Sexual Conditions Overview
Sexual conditions, or STDs, include chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis, and trichomoniasis. Vaginal or penal discharge and burning or pain during urination can indicate a STD. STD treatment and prevention includes medication and practicing safe sex.
Much of the information about HPV virus (human papillomavirus) centers on women, since having the virus increases their risk of getting cervical cancer. But HPV virus in men can cause health problems, too. It's important for men to understand how to reduce the risks of HPV infection.
HPV infection can increase a man's risk of getting genital cancers, although these cancers are not common. HPV can also cause genital warts in men, just as in women.
Risks of HPV Infection in Men
Some of the 30 or so types of HPV associated with genital cancers can lead to cancer of the anus or penis in men. Both of these cancer types are rare, especially in men with a healthy immune system.
The Symptoms of HPV in Men
The types of high-risk HPV that can cause cancer rarely present any symptoms in men or in women. Genital warts are the first symptom you may see with low-risk HPV strains that cause warts but not cancer.
How to Prevent Spreading HPV
Abstinence is the only sure way to prevent HPV transmission. Risk of transmission can be lowered if a person has sex only with one person who is not infected and who is also monogamous.
To lower the risk of HPV transmission, men can also limit the number of sex partners and pick partners who have had few or no partners in the past.
Condoms can provide some protection against HPV transmission. Unfortunately, they aren't 100% effective, since HPV is transmitted primarily by skin-to-skin contact. The virus can still infect the skin uncovered by the condom.
In a recent study of young women who had just become sexually active, those whose partners used a condom each time they had sex were 70% less likely to get an HPV infection than were women whose partners used a condom less than 5% of the time