image of a foot with a wart and dry skin around it in the heel

Warts are caused by a virus and can recur. Plantar warts are often mistaken for corns and calluses on the bottom of the foot. Warts have a spongy appearance with little black, brown, or red spots indicative of blood vessels feeding them. There are many ways to treat these benign (non-cancerous skin lesions). There is no best way. Each method of treatment has advantages and disadvantages. Sometimes it becomes necessary to use a combination of treatments. Warts can spread and they are usually very difficult to get rid of them without professional attention and care.

Warts are caused by a virus known as the human papilloma virus (HPV). The virus is contagious and it can spread to other parts of the body and other individuals. Plantar warts can occur in children to the geriatric population, but the HPV virus is more likely to affect children, teenagers, individuals that have had plantar warts in the past, and those with compromised immune systems.

Plantar warts can occur from excessive moisture to the feet, walking in damp and moist environments such as gym locker rooms, pool areas, and plantar warts can occur within a callus lesion. Contacting the virus from a family member who has a plantar wart is also a possibility if they share a shower.

Trauma such as stepping on a sharp object which causes a break in the skin can lead the virus to enter into the traumatized area forming a plantar wart.

There are several treatments for plantar warts. Controlling the moisture to the feet is very important in reducing the chances of the plantar wart becoming larger, spreading to other areas of the involved foot and body, and once a plantar wart is resolved, reducing the chances that the plantar wart can come back.

Treatment is based on the clinical findings, social factors, and daily activity level. A specific treatment plan will be discussed and performed to resolve the plantar wart or plantar warts.

Treatments can include the use of Salicylic Acid medication, Freezing therapy(Cryotherapy), scraping/trimming of the plantar wart, padding to alleviate pressure from the wart, occluding the wart, and a combination of these treatments.

Surgical removal of the plantar wart or plantar warts is also an option.

For evaluation, confirming diagnosis, and treatment options, make an appointment with Dr. Novabilski