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HPV...Nervous About Symptoms

tripwire89
Posts: 6
Joined: Feb 2012

Hi All,

I'm A 22 year old gay male who has been having an itchy anus, especially after bowel movements, when walking around on my feet (i have a job that requires me to walk often for 10 hours). After having a bowel movement and performing several wipes, I noticed that there would still be a brown substance on the toilet paper that I presumed to be residual "poop juice" for lack of a better term. There would be this, plus streaks of bright red blood coming from a lump on the outside of my anus (which I presumed to be a hemorrhoid after looking up symptoms). Other symptoms I had would be dampness of my anal region, itching and an overral irritated feeling. the itch was quite bad at times, but Ibprofin did help it.

Anyhow, I thought I'd add more fiber to my diet, try to not to irritate the area, etc. in hopes that my "hemorrhoid" would go down on its own like it was supposed to. This helped during the week when I wasn't walking and was at school, when my symptoms would rarely appear, but on the weekend at work it was a different story.

It got irritating enough at work that I set up a physical exam with a doctor (my first in around 4 years since I hadn't seen one since my pediatrician), and told him I thought I had hemorrhoids, so he took a look. He informed me that in fact it did not look like hemorrhoids, but more warts. i.e. HPV. This made me nervous, and freaked me out. He suggested I go to a dermatologist to get them removed (which I plan to do), but also knew that anal warts normally never produced symptoms like the ones I had (itching, minor bleeding, impact on bowel movements, etc).

I set up a doctor appointment for tomorrow (2/17) in hopes to further explain to him my worries about the warts and my other symptoms, because as I've looked online, it seems the only 2 correlation between these two totally separate things would be anal cancer, which makes me very nervous at my young age. If anyone could offer any suggestions based on their own experience that would be greatly appreciated.

RoseC's picture
RoseC
Posts: 503
Joined: Jun 2011

Hi -

I don't know much about anal warts but found this site which shows what they look like and what the symptoms are. Sounds very similar to what you've been experiencing.

http://www.fascrs.org/patients/conditions/anal_warts/

From the site: Some patients will experience symptoms such as itching, bleeding, mucus discharge and/or a feeling of a lump or mass in the anal area.

Hope things are ok.

duckyann
Posts: 162
Joined: Jun 2009

Hi,

You are very young to have anal cancer but I think it is good that you are seeing a doctor. Before I was diagnosed I had bleeding first. It started with just a little bit and then ended up being a lot. My itching I did not notice until later. I am really thinking it is not anal cancer but I am not a doctor and I think that you are making the right move by seeing one. Hang in there and please let us know how your appointment goes.

Take care

tripwire89
Posts: 6
Joined: Feb 2012

Thank you two for the quick replies!

Im feeling rather nervous about this probably because it's all I've been thinking about. I just found out that my 'hemorrhoid' was indeed HPV only yesterday, so that itself is taking awhile to get over. I've seen the website you suggested RoseC, and I'm hoping that's just the case.

In the next few days I'm going to pay much closer attention to my bowel movements (if they feel unusual coming out, strained, etc.) and how they appear in the bowl. Assuming any blood would be visible (red, staining the toilet bowl), I haven't seen any of that besides on my toilet paper, and that seems to just be from irritating the warts with the wiping.

Age also seems to be on my side, so that is one bright spot. Thanks for the words of encouragement!

-I've noticed bleeding seems to be the main culprit for how most of you noticed, could you elaborate on that?

RoseC's picture
RoseC
Posts: 503
Joined: Jun 2011

I didn't have any bleeding (well, only once) but yes, I think you're right that most folks do report bleeding. I had a really weird looking external growth. Biopsy showed it to be squamous cell cancer. I only had the bleeding once, when the thing got irritated - it was very sore though. And I had pretty severe constipation for several years before being diagnosed.

tripwire89
Posts: 6
Joined: Feb 2012

Interesting, that seems to be the case with my wart too. I have one larger one (well, bigger than the others) that the doc visibly touched when asking about them, and that is normally the region the itching/discomfort is in. I'll have to ask more questions tomorrow to the doctor (whom, by the way, is just an internal medicine GP, not a specialist). Do you have any questions to suggest in order to more quickly get the answers I seek?

RoseC's picture
RoseC
Posts: 503
Joined: Jun 2011

You might want to ask your GP to refer you to a colo-rectal specialist. Not to cast dispersion on your GP, but if it were me I'd feel better seeing a specialist for this kind of thing. There was a great list of questions posted by mxperry a while ago but I think they mostly related to questions concerning anal cancer. I'll try to find his post though, because it was very complete. In the meantime, I found these questions at the Mayo Clinic website for genital warts. It's a starting point anyway.

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/genital-warts/DS00087/DSECTION=preparing-for-your-appointment

# Are there any other possible causes for my symptoms?
# What tests do you recommend?
# Should I also be tested for other sexually transmitted infections?
# What treatment approach do you recommend, if any?
# How soon after I begin treatment can I expect improvement?
# Am I contagious? How can I reduce the risk of passing this infection to others?
# Should my partner be tested for this condition?
# When can I safely resume sexual activity?
# How likely am I to experience future outbreaks of genital warts?
# Am I at risk of complications related to genital warts?
# How often should I be screened for other health conditions related to genital warts?
# Are there any brochures or other printed material that I can take home with me? What websites do you recommend visiting?

Edit: I can't find that other post I mentioned - sorry....

mxperry220
Posts: 364
Joined: Mar 2011

I strongly recommend you see a colon rectal surgeon. They are highly specialized with all issues asociated with the colon to the anus. Many GPs and Internal Medicine doctors misdiagnose anal cancer as hemorrhoid.

tripwire89
Posts: 6
Joined: Feb 2012

Well, tomorrow I think I'll have my GP do a digit rectal exam just to see if he can detect anything abnormal that way (or even for more warts, etc.). I do think that I'll need his recommendation in order to see a colon-rectal surgeon though, its hard just to set an appointment to see a highly sought after doctor like that.

Dog Girl
Posts: 100
Joined: Sep 2010

I concur that you should see a colorectal dr. I went to my CR dr. instead of my GP
because I already had been to him for a colonoscopy and fissure surgery. You can ask your GP for a recommendation.

Like all others, I hope this is nothing serious. However down the road be aware that HPV and anal sex are some of the risk factors for anal cancer so be watchful. I don't think I started noticing my bodily functions until later in life :), and while you are only 22 you may want to start paying attention even at your young age. Again I hope for the best for you.

mp327's picture
mp327
Posts: 2981
Joined: Jan 2010

Please see a colorectal surgeon! I was diagnosed with anal cancer upon my first visit to my colorectal doctor with a simple anoscope exam. Her diagnosis was confirmed a few days later with biopsy. You need to have this done, which is a short scope (only a little uncomfortable but painless and no prep required, done in the doctor's office). A good colorectal surgeon will be able to tell if something looks suspicious. As for anal warts, I had 3 internal condyloma (anal warts) removed a couple years after my treatment for the cancer. They were HPV-mediated and my colorectal doc told me they must be removed so that they did not advance to cancer. None of these procedures can be done by a GP or internist, so please, please schedule an appt. with a colorectal doctor! My experience demonstrates that anal warts can and should be removed ASAP. I wish you all the best and hope you'll let us know how it goes.

tripwire89
Posts: 6
Joined: Feb 2012

just an update to all:

my GP had me scheduled for a flexible sigmoidoscopy which showed one internal anal wart in my rectum that was removed during the procedure. I'm also undergoing treatment with Aldara for my external anal warts.

He had the internal one biopsied and called with the results yesterday saying he noticed some very small cell changes and wished to examine me further with another flex-sig.

On a plus note, if the lesions are precancerous, at least I can rest easy knowing it was caught extremely early. But he wants to see me after my treatment with the Aldara is done (in about a month) and I think I may be stressed out beyond belief at that point; its all I can think about lately.

Here's to hoping for the best!

mohoper's picture
mohoper
Posts: 19
Joined: Mar 2012

I don't wish anal cancer ... well ANY cancer ... on anyone! I'm thankful you are getting it checked out & that so far, so good! Try not to stress or worry too much, which is easier said then done I know. My doctors believe my anal cancer was a direct result of stress due to trauma. Not trying to freak you out : > but stress is NOT a friend! Sending you positive healing energy, & please keep us informed!

mp327's picture
mp327
Posts: 2981
Joined: Jan 2010

Thanks for updating us. I'm glad the anal wart was removed. I had 3 removed in September 2010 and they were benign, thank goodness, but my colorectal doc said they could possibly become cancerous and they had to come out. This is why I continue to get checked every 3 months, even at 3 1/2 years post-treatment. I hope you will not have anymore of these condylomas and that the external lesions respond well to the treatment.

tripwire89
Posts: 6
Joined: Feb 2012

hi all, just another update.

I managed to take a spring break vacation to cincinnati and northern kentucky last week (as planned) so that was a lot of fun, ton of walking, sight seeing, the usual partying (I am 22, after all), etc. Its hard trying to balance my sense of normality when I constantly have this fear in the back of my head of not knowing! Which is the biggest fear of all, I think!

Anyhow, I've been having some symptoms increase that are kinda bothering me. My flex sig follow up is scheduled for April 11th, so I'm hesitant to do anything before that, but I've noticed that nearly every time after a BM i'll have some pretty insane itching/irritation (I'm on my feet walking 10 hours a day on the weekends for my job, + school during the week) and even wetness. At the same time, I'm treating my external anal warts with Aldara, so I understand that also may be the cause.

Due to the moisture and overall "leakage" for lack of a better term, I fold up a piece of toliet paper and put it in between my buttocks to stop anything from coming out (I've got a few 'fart' comments, fairly unsettling). The unsettling part is that lately i've noticed blood on the toilet paper too (note: I don't wipe after BM's to further irritate the warts, just wash after [at home]). I'm obviously going to explain all of this to my GI during my appointment, but It just has me a bit concerned and needing to vent.

I've been kind of lethargic and extremely stressed since the nurse informed me of the need to schedule a follow up flex sig; so I understand that may be the cause too. mainly just looking to release a little pent up aggression here as I haven't even explained to my 2 roommates what is going on yet, which I'm sure I will soon.

Anyhow, hope everyone else is found in good spirits!

mp327's picture
mp327
Posts: 2981
Joined: Jan 2010

I'm glad you have an appt. for a follow-up on the 11th. Hopefully, you'll get some answers at that time. I can understand your anxiety and I'm glad you came here to vent. We don't mind at all and are here to listen. Please keep us posted on what you find out. I hope that all the news will be good.

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