Plantar warts are noncancerous skin growths on the soles or toes of your feet caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV). The virus can enter your body through tiny cuts and breaks in your skin. They often develop beneath pressure points in your feet (heels or balls of your feet).
Most plantar warts aren’t serious, but they can be painful…and ugly. Did I say ugly? A plantar wart is a small lesion and typically resembles a cauliflower, with tiny black petechiae (tiny hemorrhages under the skin) in the center. The lesions can look like small, fleshy, grainy bumps or hard, flat growths. These growths interrupt the lines and ridges in the skin of your feet and can be very painful or tender when walking.
The virus that causes plantar warts thrives in warm, moist environments such as shower floors, locker rooms and public swimming areas. So you may get the virus by walking barefoot in public places. Your best bet is to wear flip flops or sandals in these areas to lower your chances of contracting these unsightly growths! Interestingly, some people are more susceptible to warts, like some people are more apt to catch a cold. Children and teenagers tend to be especially vulnerable to warts.
So how do you get rid of these unwelcome additions to your feet?
Treating plantar warts with an over-the-counter medication containing salicylic acid is often effective. But if over the counter meds do not work, I might freeze them off (cryotherapy) or cut them out as a last resort. Plantar warts can be stubborn! Often, topical prescription antiviral medication is needed.
If you are looking for a podiatrist in the Sarasota-Bradenton area, please schedule an appointment with Dr. Lasday right away for a thorough and professional evaluation, either in his Bradenton Podiatry office or Sarasota Podiatry office.