October 15, 2015

Help! I Can’t Get Rid of my Wart!

At The Podiatry Practice, we have many people come in complaining of a wart that they cannot get rid of. Usually these difficult warts are on the soles of their feet and they have tried all sorts of paints and over-the-count treatments to remove them. So why is it that nothing will work?

Firstly, a wart (verucca pedis) is an infection of the skin caused by the human papilloma virus (HPV). There are over 100 different types of HPV which can be responsible for different type of warts. Most warts on the soles of the feet are called plantar warts and are particularly difficult to get rid of due to normal weight bearing and activity pushing them deeper into the skin.

Plantar warts appear as small hard lumps with black dots in the centre (due to small blood vessel formation). However, it is also possible to get a group of tightly clustered warts on the soles of the feet called mosaic warts. Warts are particularly common in children and those with low immunity.

Many warts resolve over a period of about 12 months without medical treatment. However, treatment is usually recommended if the wart is painful or will not resolve on its own, which is often the case on the soles of the feet.

Most over-the-counter wart paints and treatments do not penetrate a plantar wart deep enough and can cause damage to healthy skin if applied incorrectly. Because of this, it is usually recommended to see a health professional if you think your wart needs treatment.

At The Podiatry Practice we treat difficult plantar warts in one of two ways, depending on how large and deep the lesion. These include –

1. Careful and precise application of high strength acids (such as 80% salicylic acid or silver nitrate) in occlusive padding

OR

2. Excision and electrosurgery under local anaesthetic – a minor low pain procedure with short healing time, similar to that used to ‘burn off’ moles, skin tags and spider veins

Having difficulty getting rid of your wart? Call the Podiatry Practice on 3391 3900 or email admin to book an appointment with one of our podiatrists.

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