Plantar Warts – A Common Pain for Any Foot

Plantars WartsPlantar warts are a common wart that occurs on the sole of the foot and are most commonly found in children, adolescents, and the elderly. If you or a family member has a plantar wart, here are some questions you may have about what is and how to treat it:

What do they look like?

Most plantar warts are about the size of a pencil eraser and tend to look like a callus, withthickened skin. They can grow into a solitary, single, wart or into mosaic warts, which is a cluster of several warts growing close together.

Are they harmful?

No, plantar warts are not harmful to your body. They are a noncancerous skin growth caused by one of the many strains of a virus known as the human papillomavirus or HPV. Although, plantar warts can go away by themselves after a period of time they can cause irritation, discomfort and pain and may need the attention of a doctor.

How did I get it?

Plantar warts are contagious and can be spread through indirect and direct contact. Walking around barefoot in the gym locker room you can pick up the virus from the floor. If you already have a wart and scratch the bottom of your feet there is a chance for the virus to spread to another location on your foot.

What is the best form of treatment?

Foot warts are challenging to treat because of their location on the bottom of the foot. The skin on the bottom of your feet is typically twice as thick as other skin which increases the potential of the wart to become thicker and deeper into the foot. When you walk on the the wart it compresses the wart deeper into the skin like trash compactor which can prevent topical medication from reaching all of the wart. Even if a treatment is successful, the wart can reappear. The goal of any treatment is to completely remove the wart. The most effective way to to kill the wart and ensure it doesn’t come back is a visit to your local podiatrists office.

Although there are many home remedies out there, if you suspect you have a plantar wart you should see your local podiatrist to discuss appropriate treatment options. Please resist the temptation to be a bathroom surgeon and try to remove the wart yourself!

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