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Therapy of cutaneous human Papillomavirus infections.

Human Papillomaviruses (HPV) are double-stranded DNA viruses, which result in a variety of clinical manifestations according to type. The most common cutaneous lesions include warts located on the skin and genitalia. Because there is currently no cure for HPV infection, treatment focuses on the alleviation of signs and symptoms. Unfortunately, therapy has not been proved to affect transmissibility. Traditional treatment modalities have focused on the destruction of infected tissue through a variety of techniques. These include podophyllin resin, podophyllotoxin, salicylic acid, trichloroacetic acid, bichloroacetic acid, cryotherapy, laser, and surgical techniques. None of these modalities have been proved to be superior. More recently, immunomodulatory compounds with antiviral properties have demonstrated superior efficacy with clearance rates up to 77% and low recurrence rates. Most importantly, clinical trials of vaccines to prevent acquisition of oncogenic HPV are demonstrating marked safety and efficacy.

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