Plantar wart (human papilloma virus)

Feet | Dermatology | Plantar wart (human papilloma virus) (Disease)


Plantar warts are noncancerous skin growths on the soles of your feet caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV), which enters your body through tiny cuts, breaks or other vulnerable sites on the skin of your feet.

Plantar warts often develop beneath pressure points in your feet, such as the heels or balls of your feet. This pressure also may cause a plantar wart to grow inward beneath a hard, thick layer of skin (callus).

Most plantar warts arent a serious health concern and may not require treatment. However, plantar warts can be bothersome or painful. If self-care treatments for plantar warts dont work, you may need to see your doctor to have them removed.

Causes and Risk factors

Each persons immune system responds differently to HPV, so not everyone who comes in contact with the virus develops warts. Even people in the same family react to the virus differently.

The HPV strains that cause plantar warts arent highly contagious. Therefore, it isnt easily transmitted by direct contact from one person to another. However, the virus does thrive in warm, moist environments — such as shower floors, locker rooms and public swimming areas. Consequently, you may contract the virus by walking barefoot around pools or gyms.

Diagnosis and Treatment

Plantar warts often dont require treatment. Most warts resolve on their own without treatment within a couple of years. However, if they are causing pain or spreading, they should be treated. Its much easier to treat a few small warts than several large warts.

Plantar warts can stubbornly resist treatment. Therefore, most treatments require patience, persistence and multiple interventions.

People with diabetes, nerve damage in their feet or weakened immunity need treatment under a doctors supervision. Your doctor will closely monitor the treatment effect and the quality of wound healing. ...

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