Warts are a common presenting problem to Dermatology practices affecting people of all ages. They are harmless growths caused by different forms of the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) and spread from person-to-person and from one part of the body to another. Although, they may disappear without any treatment, many patients present with pesky lesions that persist despite home therapy attempts.
Depending on the type of HPV infection, the location may vary as well as the appearance of the wart from flat and smooth to dome-shaped or cauliflower-like in appearance. Common locations affected are areas where breaks in the skin can occur to facilitate viral entry such as the hands, feet, knees and genitals.
There is no one gold standard treatment for warts but time and patience are a must. The most successful home therapy combines the use of a keratolytic such as Compound W to soften the wart followed by sandpaper filing on a daily basis. This can take several months. However, results can be expedited by the use of in-office curettage by one of our providers to pare the wart followed by 3 cycles of liquid nitrogen. Depending on the location, size and type of wart, most are successfully treated with one to three treatments 4 weeks apart.
- Warts are common and affect all ages
- Location and type depend on the type of HPV infection
- Removal can be expedited with curettage followed by liquid nitrogen