Caused by the humanpapillomavirus (HPV), viral warts (also known as verrucae) are a common problem. With more than 70 subtypes of HPV each causing specific types of infection, professional consultation is required to ensure the correct treatment is received.
HPV enters the skin through a number of vectors. These can include walking on abrasive surfaces, having extremely dry or moist feet (extremely common in Singapore’s humid climate), and other disorders and circumstances that weaken the skin’s ability to act a barrier.
While warts on the face and hands often project outwards, those appearing on the bottom of the foot are flattened by the pressure placed upon the sole and are covered with hard skin. These can become extremely large and can potentially spread to other parts of the body as well as other people. Starting treatment early is highly recommended.An illustration of a Plantar Wart, or Verruca Plantaris up-close on the skin.
Verruca Plantaris is a wart caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV) occurring on the sole (Latin planta) or toes of the foot.
What methods are available for plantar warts removal?
All treatments for verrucae aim at destroying the infected area due to the lack of an effective anti-viral drug. Our clinic discourages the use of home treatments as the weak acid in them often creates further entry points in the skin through which the virus can spread.
A range of clinical treatments for warts on the foot are available, including freezing (liquid nitrogen), electro-desiccation (burning) and a variety of chemical agents that destroy the particular area. Despite the range of treatments available, warts on the foot remain difficult to treat and the recurrence rate is high.
Painting on a chemical bought over-the-counter at a pharmacy is rarely effective. The warts get larger or spread. There are however the odd few cases that resolve. There are also some reports of warts disappearing on their own, something our clinic has never had the privilege of witnessing.
Using the latest electro-desiccation techniques can greatly reduce the chance of recurrence and is safe procedure, with many patients reporting zero pain after the procedure.
If you are having the same wart on your foot treated several times with no result, then consider a different treatment technique. In my own clinical experience, the longer the treatment drags out the higher the risk of it spreading to other parts and other people.