Warts are noncancerous tissue abnormalities and are growths caused by a virus. While warts can occur at any part of the body, plantar warts are warts that form along the foot’s bottom and are considered the most painful. Plantar warts occur when a virus enters the body by cuts or breaks in the skin, and while they’re not dangerous, they can be resistant to treatment and considerably painful. With that in mind, our podiatrist at Appalachian Foot & Ankle Associates can provide extensive removal of the wart and offer biopsies to rule out other potential causes.
What Caused My Plantar Wart?
Plantar warts are caused explicitly by direct contact with the human papillomavirus, the most commonly transmitted infection. Many people with HPV don’t develop symptoms, but can still infect others with the virus through direct contact. While there is no cure for HPV, many treatments for the symptoms involve wart removal. Vaccines are often the best preventative measure against HPV for children, and for those with plantar warts, it can happen in these variations:
- Solitary – Also known as a single wart, these types of plantar warts increase in size and may eventually multiply and spread to other areas of the body.
- Mosaic – Mosaic warts are multiple warts clustered together in one area. These formations are often more challenging to treat because of their proximity.
Plantar warts are often confused with corns or calluses due to their appearance. To best determine if you have a plantar wart, these symptoms most often occur:
- Thickening skin – Plantar warts tend to be hard and flat, while corns and calluses have raised surfaces that develop like layers on top of the skin. Warts have a tough, thick tissue that’s grown and have well-defined features.
- Sharp-shooting pain – Sharp, burning pain often occurs with plantar warts due to their proximity to the foot’s weight-bearing areas. Any pressure placed on the wart causes intense pain and doesn’t have the irritating feel that corns and calluses produce.
- Tiny black dots – Plantar warts often appear gray, brown, or black and have pinpoints of dried blood underneath the surface.
How are Plantar Warts Treated?
It’s essential to note that plantar warts can be quite resistant to treatment and tend to reoccur due to the presence of the virus in the body. We do not advise at-home treatment due to the possibility of destroying healthy skin and tissue. Many at-home medications contain acids and chemicals that should be avoided by people with diabetes, cardiovascular, or circulatory disorders.
At Appalachian Foot & Ankle Associates, we can supervise your wart-removal preparation and provide various removal procedures to make your visit with our podiatrists comfortable. Our office is equipped with the latest technologies to help determine the correct diagnosis and provide treatment. For plantar warts, we offer removal through these varieties of methods:
- Oral medications
- Laser therapy
- Acid treatments
Our podiatrists can provide effective, minimally invasive treatments that remove your plantar wart and provide preventative measures for protecting your feet from harm. For more information, please contact us at 828-277-8402 to schedule an appointment at either of our Asheville or Marion, NC office locations.