Warts and Verrucae Removal
Warts and Verrucae can be frustrating at any age, the frustration can be heightened when over the counter or NHS options do not show the resolution you want.
At Ever Clinic we have access to a variety of devices, including laser, which can be much more effective at removing problem warts and verrucae than more traditional options.
Your medical professional will take you through a consultation to understand exactly what your expectations and desires are, helping us achieve optimal outcomes. Local anaesthetic will be applied to ensure maximal comfort.
Questions about warts and verrucae answered
what are warts and verrucae?
Warts are caused by an infection with a type of ‘human papilloma virus’ (HPV) in the outer layer of the skin (the epidermis). This infection causes growth and thickening of this outer layer. Verrucas, also known as plantar warts, occur on the soles of the feet (the plantar surface).
how do we get warts and verrucae?
Although this infection is ‘caught’ by contact with virally-infected skin scales, the virus is not highly contagious. Infection is more common in childhood and when using public locker rooms.
what treatments can i get for warts and verrucae?
- Salicylic acid preparations – This chemical helps removal of the hard outer layer of the wart. Skin should be pared down or filed with sandpaper prior to application of the acid solution.
- Formaldehyde preparations – Mosaic warts (many small warts packed together in a small area) in particular may respond to a gel containing formaldehyde
- Cryotherapy – Freezing the warts with liquid nitrogen, using either a cotton wool bud or a spray, may be the next option. Treatment is usually repeated every 3-4 weeks. It is painful and may lead to blistering afterwards, and so it may not be suggested by your doctor for small children
If the above treatments do not clear the warts, Dr Cormac may advise on the following:
- Removal under local anaesthetic – A sharpened spoon-like instrument (a curette) is used to gently scrape the wart away, the remaining raw area then being cauterized. As with all surgical procedures, a small scar may result, and this may be painful on the sole of the foot
- Laser treatment – Here a targeted beam of laser light is aimed at the wart or verruca. Energy from the laser destroys the blood vessels feeding the area, the wart or verruca naturally falling off after a few weeks. This highly effective treatment may still require multiple treatments when dealing with deep-seated stubborn warts and verrucas
is there anything i can do to prevent getting warts and verrucae?
The following ‘self-care’ advice will help minimize discomfort and spread of warts and verrucas:
- Never try to remove the wart or verruca yourself
- Choose comfortable shoes that minimise pressure on verrucas
- Avoid sharing shoes or socks with anyone else
- Pressure-relieving pads can be purchased at any pharmacy
- Keep feet clean and dry, and change socks daily
- Avoid going barefoot in public places. Cover plantar warts with waterproof plasters or ‘verruca socks’ if you go swimming
- Avoid picking at plantar warts. When paring your wart down, carefully dispose of the dead skin. Sand paper will also have living wart virus on it, so avoid using it for any other purpose
- Take care when paring or filing down warts, as damage to the surrounding skin may cause spreading of the warts
- Check your children periodically for warts and verrucas