Common Foot Problems

Plantar Warts

A wart is the cause of the most common skin virus that results in a small growth on the skin. Warts can grow on any area of the foot, but plantar warts develop on the plantar surface, or bottom, of the foot. Plantar warts affect all age groups but are most common in children from ages 12-16, and the elderly.

There are two classifications of warts -- solitary warts, and mosaic warts.

Solitary warts grow individually, may grow larger and eventually multiply, forming other warts nearby.

Mosaic warts grow in clusters of several small warts in one area. Treatment of mosaic warts is more difficult than solitary warts because of their close proximity..

Certain strains of human papilloma virus (HPV) cause warts on direct contact. Other types of HPV may cause warts in the genital tract and other parts of the body.

Plantar warts may be identified with the following symptoms:

  • Tough, thickened skin tissue resembling a callus.
  • Pain from walking, standing or putting pressure on the wart.
  • Small black dots appearing on the top layer of the wart. These dots are dried blood inside tiny blood vessels -- capillaries -- of the skin.
  • Plantar warts infect the skin surface, starting small and growing larger and deeper over time.

Dr. Radovic will examine the foot, looking for signs and symptoms to diagnose a plantar wart.

Warts may resolve within months or years without treatment, but most patients do not want to wait that long. The goal of medical treatment is to remove the wart and prevent its return.

Topical and oral treatments, acid treatments, laser therapy, cryotherapy (freezing) or surgery may be used for wart removal.

To ensure proper treatment, patients should follow the treatment plan assigned by Dr. Radovic, including home care, prescribed medications and follow up appointments. Warts may not resolve and require other treatment methods.

If patients are unresponsive to treatment, Dr. Radovic may further evaluate the condition to determine the possible causes for growth. A biopsy may be necessary to aid a diagnosis.

There are many alternative treatments for plantar warts that are not medically proven and may be harmful. Patients should consult Dr. Radovic for wart removal to avoid any possible complications.

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