I’m talking about the viral  “W A R T”.  Warts are a common condition seen by podiatrists.  They are caused by the papilloma virus which can be found almost anywhere.  The virus is found on surfaces that we walk on and will enter your skin through a break.  The break does not have to be large.  It can be a very minor crack in a dry or overused foot.  Often they are neglected because they resemble corns or calluses. Unfortunately since they are caused by a virus warts can start as a single solitary lesion and multiply into many lesions.  When the warts are on the bottoms of your feet, they can become very painful due to compression and deepening from weight bearing forces.

Prevention would include wearing flip flops while in public showers, lockers and pool areas.  Also preventing cracks in your skin by applying emollient creams daily.  If you have a break in your skin make sure it’s covered.

The key is to act early and aggressively.  Given the opportunity your foot could be covered with warts in a very short amount of time.  What makes things worse is the entire family as well as your visitors will be exposed to and more prone to catching the virus.  Some ways to prevent this are to cleanse showers with dilute bleach preparations and to wear shoes and or slippers while walking around the house.

The most common home treatment is drugstore bought salicylic acid preparations.  These are applied daily.  Also store bought freezing kits can be effective although I find they have very poor results on the bottoms of the feet.

If you have a wart and you can’t get it under control then call a specialist.  In our Doylestown podiatrists office, we use a variety of methods to get rid of warts.  Some of these include specially compounded acids, blistering agents and in office excisional procedures.