An old wives tale explains warts coming from touching frogs or putting your hand into the water used to boil eggs. It is now known that warts come from a human papilloma virus, which is NOT found in either frogs or hard-boiled egg water! Warts are also called verruca or verrucae and can be singular in nature or clustered. Warts can occur anywhere on the foot; however are more often found on the soles or the bottom of the feet referred to as plantar warts. Since a virus causes warts, they can come and go as they please and be very difficult to prevent.
What does a wart look like?
There are a few distinct features that may help you determine if you have a wart. If the wart is found early it will be small and hard to notice. While if the wart is discovered later on, it may be accompanied by callus formation on the sole of the foot. Warts have a lot of blood flow from very small vessels and may contain black dots. Skin lines will expand around the wart, which can help distinguish it from a callus.
How does a wart feel?
Location, location, location. A wart can be very painful while walking if on a weight baring part of the foot or anywhere that may cause irritation. For example, under the heel, big toe joint or even under a toenail may cause pain. Another common sign of a wart is pain while pinching the wart from side to side.
What should I do about my wart?
Not every wart on the foot needs a podiatrist. There are many over-the-counter therapies that patients try prior to making an appointment. It is, however, important to detect early while not allowing it to grow or multiply before seeking treatment. Cryotherapy (“freezing” the wart), surgical removal and topical treatment can be used in a podiatrist’s office for the treatment of warts.
Don’t let your warts cause you unnecessary pain or discomfort. If warts are affecting you or someone you know, or notice any changes in their foot health, please consider making an appointment with Dr. Gary N. Friedlander or Dr. Jay C. Larson at Sole Foot and Ankle Specialists in Glendale, Arizona.