Plantar Wart Facts

These are warts that usually appear on the heels or balls of the feet and are caused by the human papillomavirus entering the body through cuts and abrasions. Since plantar warts grow in areas that are under the most pressure, the wart may grow inward, with a hard layer of callused skin covering it.

While not a serious health concern, plantar warts can cause considerable pain and discomfort. Often conservative methods of treatment will be sufficient to alleviate the problem, but for severe cases you may need to consult with your foot doctor to have the wart professionally removed.

Plantar wart signs and symptoms may include the following:

  • A small, grainy growth with a rough surface on the bottom of your foot.
  • Hard, callused skin appearing over a “bump,” indicating that a wart has grown inward.
  • Wart seeds are the little black points that appear in the center of a wart. They are actually caused by clotted blood vessels.
  • Pain, discomfort and tenderness when putting weight on your foot.

Treatment methods for plantar warts:

Plantar warts usually go away on their own after a year or two. If they are causing you pain and discomfort, or if they are spreading, you may want to talk to your doctor about other treatments including:

  • Prescription strength peeling solution. You can apply this acid yourself at home to gradually peel away layers of the wart.
  • Stronger acids may be applied by your doctor if necessary.
  • Cryotherapy. This method of freezing the wart with liquid nitrogen is frequently combined with peeling therapy for a more effective result. These methods may also stimulate your immune system to fight the virus that causes plantar warts.
  • Vaccine therapy. HPV vaccine may be effective at killing the virus that causes warts.

You can lower your risk of developing plantar warts by taking common sense steps to avoid coming in contact with the virus that causes them. These steps include: practicing good hygiene by washing and drying your feet daily; wearing shower shoes or sandals in public pools, showers and locker rooms; and not sharing your socks or shoes with other people.

If you are currently experiencing pain from plantar warts, the foot specialists at Havertown Podiatry, in Havertown, PA are experts in all aspects of foot and ankle care and will be happy to assist you. Our team of doctors is dedicated to serving you with all of the latest diagnostic equipment and techniques. Please contact our office with any questions you may have or to make an appointment by calling 610-449-3344.

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