Warts, in particular plantar warts are a common condition that we see and treat at The Foot Clinic. Plantar warts are caused by the HPV virus (Human Papilloma Virus) and they can be painful, especially when squeezed or when playing sports. As they are highly contagious, it is important to see a qualified podiatrist for an accurate diagnosis and treatment plan.
What causes warts
Warts are highly contagious and spread through direct contact. The most commonly seen methods of transmission are via direct skin-to-skin contact or via public areas where the virus is present such as swimming pools and locker rooms. This means that warts can spread quickly in households once one person is contagious if care is not taken.
Warts, including plantar warts, are common in children for a number of reasons:
- Children’s immune system is still developing making it easier for the virus to infect the skin
- Children are more likely to come in contact with the virus in communal spaces such as public swimming pools and school changing rooms
- Children skin is more likely to be damaged by cuts and scrapes which can provide an entry point for the virus
Wart appearance and symptoms
Warts can appear alone or in clusters and are commonly mistaken for corns due to both conditions causing pain with pressure. The true appearance of the wart can often be covered by a layer of callus that builds over the wart, which can be removed by a podiatrist. The wart underneath may have:
- A rough, grainy appearance
- Tiny black dots which are dried blood vessels
- Loss of appearance of skin lines through the wart
- Cause pain when pinched
How do you treat it?!
The old and common methods for treating warts include freezing or using an acid to kill the wart with moderate success rates. However, this can be troublesome due to the weekly visits, pain after and keeping any dressings dry. Other methods include surgical excision, but these can have complications such as painful scarring and high reoccurrence rates. Success rates for all these treatments vary highly due to a number of factors including legnth of time the wart has been present, age of patient and practitioner skill.
Typically, we see a lot of patients who have tried these therapies in the past with limited success and come to see us for those stubborn warts. This is why we use Swift Therapy.
Wart treatment using Swift Microwave Therapy
SWIFT Microwave Therapy is exclusive to qualified Podiatrists and Dermatologists licensed to provide this treatment solution. SWIFT uses a state-of-the-art scientifically proven process called Targeted Heat Shock Therapy which at 83% resolution has the highest success rate for any wart treatment worldwide. It is very fast and non-invasive, with no downtime after treatment and fewer treatment sessions required, so you can return to your normal day-to-day activities and sports immediately!
SWIFT Microwave Therapy works on all warts, giving hope to those patients who have already tried everything else. This is the reason why The Foot Clinic has invested in this exciting new technology.
Click here to read more about Swift Microwave Therapy at The Foot Clinic.
There are a number of measures we can take to prevent transmission:
- Keep your feet clean and dry
- Wear shoes in public areas, particularly sandals or thongs in communal areas such as public pools, showers and locker rooms
- Avoid sharing personal items such as towels, socks or shoes
- Keep your skin moisturised to prevent dry, cracked skin that can provide an entry poiny for the virus
- If you notice a growth or changes to the skin on your feet, visit your podiatrist immediately