Plantar Warts (Verrucae)

Plantar warts are small, rough and often circular growths that are medically known as verrucae and occur on the feet, knees and hands. They’re caused by a virus called the Human Papillomavirus (HPV) and are often contracted in childhood. Once you’ve contracted the virus, you’ll always have it in your system, so plantar warts may spontaneously recur throughout your lifetime.

If you have a plantar wart, you may notice:

A round, grainy mass

Small black pinpoint dots (clotted blood vessels) in the wart tissue

Bumps on the surface of warts

The natural lines of the skin of the foot go through the wart

Callus may cover the wart if it’s in a weight bearing area

Pain on pinching the wart from the sides

Pain when walking if it is on a weight bearing area, otherwise it may be barely noticeable

One or more warts, of potentially varying sizes, present at one time

What causes plantar warts?

The HPV virus is the cause of plantar warts and is spread through direct contact. If you have a break in the skin, like a small cut or graze, then you may contract the virus through sharing the same surface like a shower or a floor. Once you contract the virus, it may take months for the wart to develop.

Immune systems do respond differently and not everyone that comes in contact with the virus will develop plantar warts. Similarly, a weakened immune system may make you more susceptible to contracting the virus.

A persons foot showing Plantar Warts

How are plantar warts treated?

Plantar warts can go away without treatment, but this may take months and often years. You should see your podiatrist if you’re unhappy with the appearance of your warts, they begin to spread, or they cause you any pain.

While pharmacy products are available, their effectiveness varies and can cause harm to the skin surrounding the wart if you’re not careful. If you have a systemic condition like diabetes, you should avoid trying to manage wart yourself and instead see your Podiatrist for treatment, guidance and the best long-term outcomes. This is because diabetes puts you at risk for complications and problems with healing.

Here at Cartwight podiatry, we’ll discuss solutions including:

Topical treatment with a mild acid (salicylic acid, silver nitrate)

Cryotherapy, which involves freezing the warts

Prescribed medications

Minor surgery to scoop out the wart

We’ll discuss which option will be best for you based on your work and other commitments, and do all we can to ensure your treatment is as comfortable and painless as possible.

Need an experienced team to safely treat your plantar warts?

Book online or get in touch with us today

Need an experienced team to safely treat your plantar warts?

Book online or get in touch with us today