Wart Removal Treatment

Do you have a wart or unsure if you have one?   The sight of one may be embarrassing or irritating.  Maybe you just want it looked at and go over options of getting rid of it.  My Concierge MD is the Greater Los Angeles premier destination for wart treatment and wart removal.  Warts may temporary get in your way, but they don’t have to stay long!  We have helped numerous patients with the removal of their warts, and we can help you too!

What are Warts?

Warts are growths discovered on the skin and are caused by exposure to viruses in the human papillomavirus (HPV) family.  They are caused by human papillomavirus entering into the body through a small break in the skin.  Once it enters and gets under the skin, it can infect the skin cells underneath and causes a wart to develop.  It is also possible for the human papillomaviruses to live on healthy skin without it ever causing a wart.

Interestingly, there are over 100 unique types of HPVs. The most prevalent type of warts are the ones noticed on the skin and are not known to be cancerous, but sexually transmitted warts called genital warts can possibly be connected with cancer.  This is why it is a good idea to consult with your doctor about any concerns with warts on your body.

In many cases, warts will gradually disappear on their own, but it may take several months or even years.  This is why people may seek treatment from a doctor for the removal of warts.  Without treatment, there is the chance of spreading warts on your own body or spreading them to other people.

Many warts are contagious and can be easily spread by direct contact with the human papillomavirus.  Even if you have a wart, you can actually re-infect yourself by touching the wart and then touching another part of your body.  And even so, you can infect other people just by sharing personal items including towels and razors.  If you have come in contact with someone who has a wart or have had exposure to a human papillomavirus, it can possibly take several months before noticing a wart on your skin because when you get one, they grow slowly beneath the skin and take a while before you can actually see them.

It is important to know that each and every person is different and their bodies will react differently to certain HPVs.  There are people who may be exposed to a human papillomavirus and not even develop a wart, while others exposed to a HPV may develop a wart.

A question occasionally asked is if it is possible for common warts found on the hands or fingers to spread to the genitals causing genital warts?  Quite honestly, it depends because there are many different types of HPV.  The types that cause common warts are usually different from those that cause plantar warts or genital warts.  If the wart on ones hand is caused by a type of HPV (human papillomavirus) that can also cause genital warts, then there is a possibility that contact with the infected skin can possibly cause genital warts.  But more often than not, the typical kind of wart you observe on the hands or feet will not cause genital warts.

Types of Warts

A wart comes in a variety of shapes and sizes and is seen as a flat or raised growth on the skin, and it is obvious.  It may appear as a bump with a rough looking surface or flat and smooth.  And, the warts can be supplied with blood by tiny blood vessels growing into the core of the wart.

  • Common Warts
  • Dome-Shaped, Rough, Gray-Brown Warts – Found on fingers, knees & toes.
  • Plantar Warts
  • Found on any part of the foot but usually on the sole of the foot.
  • Flat Warts or Plane Warts
  • These are small and found in large amounts on legs, face & other body parts. They are typically known to spread by shaving and are light brown, pink or light yellow in color.
  • Filiform Warts
  • A flat wart that is commonly found on the face around the mouth and nose area and appear as a single long stalk.

Wart Treatment Options

Not all warts need to be treated, and not all treatments will be successful.  You can wait for a wart to disappear on its own, or you can look into a wart removal treatment.  There are over-the-counter wart removal options, medically prescribed wart removal options and medical procedures for removal of warts.  Once you are seen and evaluated our doctor will discuss the best treatment options for your particular situation.

There is always the possibility that even when a wart shrinks or disappears, it may return in the same spot or spread to other parts of the body.  Often times multiple wart treatments are needed to destroy the wart and actually kill off the virus that causes the wart.

  • Wart Medicines
  • Pumice or Sandpaper
  • Salicylic Acid
  • Cryotherapy
  • TCA Chemical Acid
  • Cantharidin, Retinoid Cream or Imiquimod.
  • Provide gentle abrasion of warts.
  • High concentrations of salicylic acid on patches or topically can destroy wart tissue.
  • Liquid nitrogen is used to freeze off a wart.
  • Chemical acids destroy damaged skin and wart.

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Wart Removal Salicylic Acid

The number of and the location of warts will usually be the main indictor of the best treatment option for wart removal.  For larger areas covered by warts, salicylic acid may be the best answer.  This option may take longer to get rid of the wart(s) than if having a medical procedure performed by a medical doctor.

Salicylic acid is a safe home treatment method frequently used for getting rid of warts and is available in drops, pads, gels and plasters.  It is used to soften the skin layers where the wart is formed so that the wart can be rubbed off with a pumice stone, sandpaper or file.  If the dead skin on top of the wart is removed, the salicylic acid may work even better.

It is not recommended to use salicylic acid if you are uncertain if you have a wart.  Also, it isn’t recommended for anyone who has any medical conditions like peripheral arterial disease, diabetes or any other circulatory problem.  Additionally, you shouldn’t use the salicylic acid on any open wounds, birthmarks, moles, unusual looking warts with hair growth or any warts of found on mucous membranes.  It is recommended to consult with your doctor if any of these types of situations apply to you.

Cryotherapy – Liquid Nitrogen for Wart Removal Freeze

Cryotherapy or freezing of warts with liquid nitrogen is an effective way to remove unwanted warts. This treatment method is sometimes not suitable for young children. Our physicians will discuss this procedure with you in detail during your consultation.

Cryotherapy involves using very cold liquid called liquid nitrogen to freeze a wart.  Whenever applying liquid nitrogen, you may experience some discomfort.  The treatment may need to be repeated a few more times until the wart is completely gone, but there is a chance that if the treatment doesn’t end up working that another treatment option be recommended.

Cryosurgery – Liquid Nitrogen for Wart Removal Freeze

Cryosurgery is a process of removing a wart without hurting the skin around it, and it may require several freezing treatments or liquid nitrogen until wart is completely removed.

Cryosurgery can sometimes be uncomfortable for a short period of time, but typically the freezing will be numbing to the skin like the feeling of an ice-cube stuck to your skin followed by a burning sensation.

Your doctor may ask you to do some preparation before having this procedure, and your doctor will go over what is best for your particular condition.  A recommendation he may suggest is cleaning the wart with soap and water every night, apply 17% salicylic acid gel on it and cover it with a piece of 40% salicylic acid pad for at least 2-weeks prior.  The pad should be left on the wart for last least 24-hours and if the wart is sore or red in color, call your doctor.  Once you have removed the pad, clean the area with soap and water, apply more of t17% salicylic acid gel on the wart and again cover it with a new 40% salicylic acid pad.

After about two weeks of following the regimen for preparing your wart for cryosurgery, you may notice the wart turned white and looks fluffy.  With the wart in this state, your doctor will be able to easily remove the top, white skin layer covering the wart, and then be able to use cryosurgery to freeze off the root of the wart.

It is important to know, cryosurgery is very cold and if you are sensitive to extreme cold, please advise your doctor in advance prior to the procedure.

Plantar Wart Treatment

It’s important to distinguish a plantar wart from a callus before choosing the best treatment for it. Wart treatment applied to a callus may be painful or create scar tissue.

Salicylic acid drops and plasters may be used to help remove the thick overlying callus and make the wart feel less like a marble in a shoe.  Non-prescription aerosol freezing may be used to help remove the thick overlying callus, too.

Plantar warts are often hard to treat because they lie beneath the skin. A doctor may need to pare the skin over a wart to help the medicine penetrate the wart.

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When to Call the Doctor?

There are times when you may need to have a doctor examine a wart.  If you are not sure that a growth is a wart, then you should see your doctor to make sure it isn’t a cancerous growth.  The following are some of the signs when you would want to call your doctor:

  • Warts on the face
  • Bleeding from the wart
  • Red streaks extending from the wart site
  • The spread of warts to other parts of the body or to other people
  • Wart is painful, easily irritated, redness, tenderness, swollen or heat at site
  • Easily irritated
  • Difficulty standing or walking with a plantar wart
  • If you have a medical condition like diabetes or even peripheral arterial disease
  • Discharge or puss from the wart
  • Fever
  • Non-prescription home treatments are unsuccessful after a few months
  • Genital Warts

If you have a wart or are concerned about a wart you do have, you can contact My Concierge MD and make an appointment to have the infected area checked out by the doctor. Once seen by the doctor, he will discuss with you your best treatment options for removing the wart. Visit us at: My Concierge MD