Green tea for genital warts -- no, you don't brew it and drink it. Nor can you buy it at your drugstore or purchase it online. A relatively new prescription topical ointment approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in October 2006 contains extract of green tea, which has been shown to be of benefit to those suffering from genital and anal warts.
About Genital Warts
Genital warts, also known as venereal warts and condylomata acuminata, is a sexually transmitted disease caused by spread of certain strains of the human papillomavirus or HPV, according to MedlinePlus.com. Genital warts affect one of the tenderest and most personal parts of your body -- the external genitals -- but can also erupt around the anus. Women can get them inside of the cervix, and both genders can get them inside of the anus as well. The warts may grow close together and have a cauliflower-like conformation. Many genital warts go away without treatment, but if they cause itching, discomfort and bleeding during sexual intercourse, you may want to consider treatment options.
History of Treatments
Highly antioxidant polyphenolic compounds called catechins, extracted from green tea, are the active ingredients in Polyphenon E Ointment, 15 percent, developed by MediGene AG and manufactured and marketed in the United States by Bradley Pharmaceuticals, Inc., which holds the patent until 2017. Polyphenon E Ointment, sold under the trade name Veregen T, was released to the public in 2007.
According to NaturalStandard.com, prior to the approval of Polyphenon E Ointment, two randomized, double-blind clinical studies were conducted using 400 adult participants with genital and anal warts. Participants applied the ointment three times a day. Results of the two studies indicate that the median time required to get rid of genital warts entirely was 16 and 10 weeks, respectively. Green tea for genital warts may also prove to be a milestone treatment, says the Natural Standard; Polyphenon E Ointment is the first botanical medication to be approved by the FDA under amendments added to federal law in 1962 that require all drugs to be proven both safe and effective before being marketed and sold in the United States.
Use & Side-Effects
Typical dosage of Veregen T is about a 0.5 centimeter "strand" applied to the affected area three times daily, says the Veregen website. It should not be used inside the vagina or anus, or applied to broken skin. The ointment should not be washed off before applying the next dose, but if you bathe or shower, make sure to reapply the ointment afterward. Common side effects reported during clinical studies include redness, burning, itching, pain, ulceration, inflammation and hardening of the skin.
According to data supplied by Bradley Pharmaceuticals, genital warts are "one of the most common and fastest spreading venereal diseases worldwide." Always see a health care provider if you have -- or think you may have -- genital warts. Other treatments for genital warts consists of cryosurgery and topical imiquimod creams, along with other surgical wart removal procedures and prescription topicals. Green tea for genital warts may be a good option for you, but beware of imitators -- you can't get this treatment without a prescription. Ask your doctor if Polyphenon E Ointment is the right option for you.