Plantar Warts (Verruca Pedis)

Problem

  • Plantar wart is a term generally used to describe warts found on the feet and toes, particularly on the plantar surface or bottom of the foot.
  • Warts can be painful as they are lesions that contain nerve endings and blood vessels. They can have tiny dark centres and may bleed if cut back.
  • They are caused by the Human Papilloma virus, spread by skin contact with infected wart tissue or secretions.
  • Growth is accelerated by warm moist conditions, such as found on hot sweaty feet and in closed in shoes.
  • Warts are very contagious.
  • Plantar Warts (veruccae pedis), occur not only on the bottom (plantar surface) of the foot, but can also occur on and between the toes.
  • In appearance warts can be confused with corns or callous. Warts will hurt when squeezed from side to side.
  • Unlike corns and callous, wart tissue is foreign to skin tissue. If you look closely you will see no skin lines running through a wart, instead they diverge around it.
  • Treatment is often required, although some warts will spontaneously disappear as the body's immune system responds. Treatment is required if warts are painful and or obviously growing in size or number. Often a person will initially notice a single wart which then multiplies rapidly into several lesions.

Treatment

  • Home treatment can include the use of various applications available from the pharmacy. These need good skin preparation between applications and consistent treatment to be successful. Often these applications are not strong enough to totally clear the wart.
  • Podiatry treatment for warts will generally involve the application of stronger acid preparations. Some layers of skin will be removed from the wart before application of the acid for better penetration.
  • The number of treatments required will depend on wart size and quantity and the body's immune response.
  • Paddings and deflections can be applied to the treatment area, if the wart becomes painful to put pressure on when walking.

Examples of Warts

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