Warts are skin out growths that can occur on any part of the body but are more common on the hands. They are benign (not cancerous) growths. They are caused by an infection of the Human papilloma virus which infects the top layer of the skin. This virus is contagious and can spread by a direct contact. If there are any open cuts on the body then the likelihood of transmission increases, such as in the beard area in men and over the legs in women where they shave regularly. The color of the warts varies from being skin colored to being brown or gray black. Their texture varies from being rough to being flat and smooth.

TYPES OF WARTS

Warts are classified based on the site they grow and their appearance.

  • Common warts aka verruca vulgaris are commonly seen in children.
  • Foot warts aka plantar warts occur on the sole of the feet and are difficult to treat.
  • Flat warts
  • Filiform warts

WHO GETS WARTS?

Warts can affect anyone but some individuals are more prone than the others, they include

  • Children and teens.
  • People who bite their nails or pick at hangnails.
  • People with a weakened immune system

Diagnosis

Warts can be diagnosed by a doctor after a careful inspection. In some cases a skin biopsy may be necessary in case for an accurate diagnosis.

Treatment

  • Warts in children usually resolve on their own, however, if they are painful or are spreading quickly please consult a doctor.
  • Warts in adults are difficult to treat. They can be left untreated but doctors may choose to treat them based on their severity.

Some of the treatments employed include

  • Electrosurgery and curettage
  • Excision
  • Laser treatment
  • Chemical peels

Outcome

Warts have a propensity to recur even after an initial treatment, this happens when the old warts shed the viruses into the surrounding skin where the cycle starts again. Please consult the doctor in such a scenario to plan the further steps of management.

ASSOCIATED COSTS

Click here for the cost for treatment of Warts.