[Question #531] HPV warts in throat

38 months ago
I believe I have warts in my throat and respiratory tract.  I have constant drainage which is so thick that I can barely swallow. It chokes me. I have been taking antibiotics for two months with no improvement. I don't feel sick. So I know it isn't just a sinus infection.  Six months ago I  gave analingus to a dominatrix/prostitute.  I licked her toes too. I have problems sleeping because I can't breathe. I have used a CPAP for 15 yrs. It no longer helps me. Please Help. I'm really anxious. Thanks in advance. I have an appt with an ENT next week. Can this kill me?
Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
38 months ago

Welcome to our Forum.  I will try to help.  The first thing to do, going forward is to see your ENT and find out what might be happening.  HPV infections of the throat are uncommon and when they occur typically do not cause the sorts of symptoms you describe.  Transmission of HPV to the throat is far less common than to genital sites and when infection occurs, the warts occurring in the oral cavity tend to be smaller and are not associated with drainage.  I am not aware of any descriptions of oral or pharyngeal HPV causing the sorts of symptoms that you describe.  My suspicion is that your current symptoms are unrelated to the sexual experience you describe and may have another cause.  EWH


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38 months ago
Thanks for replying. I did have two CT scans last week of my sinuses and throat. One with contrast and one without. Neither showed any warts or tumors. They did show retention cysts in my sinus cavities. What concerns me is that I am having a hard time swallowing all the time. It seems like I don't produce enough saliva. If I do have warts in my throat are they easily found and removed by an ENT doctor? I read about RRP and now I am really freaked out. I always feel like I have a lump in my throat. I went to the ER last week because I couldn't swallow and clear my windpipe. That's when they did the CT scans. Sorry for rambling.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
38 months ago
No problem.  I understand and can tell that you are having problems.  RRP is an HPV infection acquired at  birth in less than 1 in 100,000 exposures and does not casue the sorts of symptoms you describe.  It is not acquired through oral sex.  Were you to have oro-pharyngeal or tracheal warts, I am sure that the warts could be readily removed by an ENT.  As I said above however, I am confident that is not the problem.  eWH---
38 months ago
Thanks for the reply Doctor Hook. I started taking 10mg of Prednisone every day around 6 pm a few days ago. It has helped greatly with the drainage/swallowing issue. The breathing issue is still on going. I notice it more in the morning than when I first go to bed. I'm worried that I have warts blocking my airway. I just can't get that idea out of my head. I never had the breathing problem before my sexual encounter. My cpap therapy worked perfectly.  Can warts obstruct my airway?  Does the prednisone temporarily shrink the warts? Then they return to full size in the early morning. Sorry if my questions seem dumb. Just worried and stressed. I have lost 50 lbs in a month and a half stressing over this. I also take 1 mg of ativan prior to going to sleep. Can't fall asleep without it. Thanks again.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
38 months ago
As you know, Forum guidelines permit only three responses, thus this will be my final response.  Your repeat question does not change my opinion or advice.  Prednisone would not be expected to shrink warts if present and, as I have already said, the circumstance you describe is not suggestive of HPV of the airway.  I am confident the ENT you see will tell you this.  When he/she does, I hope you will be able to go forward without further concern.  If you cannot, I strongly recommend that you see a counselor to help you work through these unwarranted fears.  EWH
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38 months ago
Hello. Just wanted to let you know that I went to the ENT today and everything was fine. No sign of warts. Thanks for all your help. Good luck to everyone who is struggling with this problem.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
38 months ago
Glad to hear this.  I hope that your ENT will be able to help you moving forward.  EWH
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