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Warts treatment

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What is a wart?

Warts are caused by the human papilloma virus. A virus requires a host to replicate, in this instance the virus takes host in the skin cells of the epidermis (upper layers of the skin) and replicates within, causing the wart we all know. Most warts are round, firm and raised with a cauliflower like appearance, but they can occasionally be flat.

What causes warts?

Anyone can catch a wart; they are more often found on surfaces which come into contact with objects and others such as the hands and face. They are contagious, and the risk of contamination increases greatly when the skin is wet, cross-infection can occur directly in contact with another with a wart, or indirectly such as sharing a towel. A verruca is a wart on the foot, caused by the same virus usually on a weight bearing area. Warts and verruca are harmless, verruca can sometimes cause discomfort, but mainly the problem people have with them is their unsightly appearance.

What is the treatment for warts in podiatry?

Most of the time warts will clear up by themselves, this may take months or even years. If a wart is bothering you, painful, or spreading, opting for treatment may be the best option to speed up the process. Evidence has shown that the vast majority of warts will clear without any intervention within two years as the body's immune response fights the virus. There are many different treatment options for warts but there is no treatment which can provide a 100% guarantee of resolution. There are some treatments which will work for some where they may not work for others.

Wart treatments aim to destroy the infected tissue, this will usually involve reduction of any overlying thickened skin, and the application of an acid to the area, or freezing it. It is impossible to estimate when a wart will resolve, some go on their own, some will fall off after one treatment, others will persist and require more sessions, some may not go at all.

Our podiatrists will be able to advise you on the best possible treatment for your following an initial assessment, and advise you on aftercare and prevention of the wart spreading or returning.

To receive podiatry treatment for your wart you can arrange an appointment by emailing us on or call 0330 088 4222.

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