Warts are caused by viruses in the HPV (human papillomavirus) family and usually appear on the hands or feet. Warts are contagious and can be passed from one person to another or to other parts of the body so it's important to identify and treat warts promptly.
The clinical appearance of warts include common warts, flat warts, plantar warts, periungual warts, filiform warts, and genital warts. Warts are local growths in the skin caused by human papillomavirus (HPV) infection. For example, the same type of wart virus can cause common hand.
Warts are small, self-limited benign tumors caused by one of over 100 types of human papillomaviruses (HPV).
The clinical appearance of warts include common warts, flat warts, plantar warts, periungual warts, filiform warts, and genital warts.
Warts typically disappear spontaneously, but it may take years.
Warts respond variably to a variety of treatment measures.
Over-the-counter treatments for warts include salicylic acid preparations and freezing kits.
Warts may recur following treatment.
What are the symptoms and signs of the different types of warts?
There are familiar type of dome-shaped warts on the backs of fingers, toes, and knees. These warts often have small black dots on their surfaces, which represent multiple thrombosed (clotted) capillaries. These dots have been called "seed warts."
Plantar warts are found on the sole (plantar surface) of the foot (not to be mislabeled as a planter's wart). Similar in appearance are warts on the palms (palmar warts). Small warts growing in clusters on the plantar surface of the foot have been called mosaic warts.
Flat ("plane") warts may arise on the face, legs, and other parts of the body, often in large numbers.
Periungual warts are warts around or under the nail.
Filiform warts have a single long stalk, often on the face.
Most warts have a rough surface, as well as a number of black pinpoint spots that represent small clotted capillaries.
Traumatized warts occasionally bleed and have been called blood warts.
What is the treatment for warts? Are there home remedies for warts?
Common warts can be annoying to anyone. It is worth considering that, in normal people, half of all warts, on average, spontaneously go away within about 18 months. The information in this article is about the treatment of common warts. It does not apply to venereal or genital warts. Over-the-counter treatment for common skin warts has long been based upon the use of products containing salicylic acid to destroy the wart. Newer nonprescription wart treatments include carbon dioxide aerosols to freeze warts.
Are wart treatments effective?
Above all, wart treatments require patience. The fact that there are a wide variety of wart treatments is evidence for the fact that there is no single best therapy. Warts can appear and disappear without an identifiable cause and often disappear on their own without treatment.
Some warts sprout daughter warts near the main wart and others don't. Warts are generally painless unless they are present in areas prone to pressure or friction like the palms and soles. Certain warts, even of the same type, respond to treatment, while others (even on the same person at the same time) don't. Treatment methods may require many sessions over weeks, months, or longer. Here is a practical approach to the treatment of warts:
Ignore the warts. Eventually, they'll go away (although eventually can mean a long time -- even months or years).
With an uncomplicated case (a single wart on the face or one or a few on the hands), see a doctor for a quick freeze or electrical destruction. These methods are simple, although somewhat painful, and generally nonscarring.
With a difficult case, start by treating the warts for a few weeks at home. Here are some examples:
Plantar warts: Warts on the bottom of the foot feel deep, but they are still within the superficial layer of the skin. Tender plantar warts can be rendered painless by paring the wart thinner without causing bleeding. Salicylic-acid drops and plasters help remove the thick overlying callus responsible for making the wart feel less like a marble in the shoe. Nonprescription aerosol freezing may be used as well.
Common hand warts: These are typically unattractive although not painful. Salicylic acid often shrinks the wart, encouraging resolution, as can nonprescription freezing.
With an all-but-impossible case, don't try too hard. Don't make the treatment worse than the disease. Here are some examples:
Warts under and around the nails: These are extremely resistant to treatment. One or two tries by the doctor are worth a shot, but if they fail, putting acid on them oneself just makes them look rough and unattractive.
"Mosaic" warts: These tiny warts can proliferate by the dozens or hundreds all over the sole of the foot. They don't usually hurt, and they rarely respond to any sort of treatment, although in this case, too, one or two tries at treatment may be in order.
Flat warts: These are small, flat, flesh-colored bumps and may be numerous on one part of the body (for example on the face, arms, or groin). Getting rid of them by a light application of salicylic acid or other method is easy enough, but they have a tendency to recur.
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