Wart is also the name of a Nintendo character, see Wart (Nintendo character).
A wart is a generally small, rough, cauliflower-like growth, typically on hands and feet. Warts are common and contagious, and are caused by a viral infection, specifically by the aerobic Human Papilloma Virus (HPV). They typically disappear after a few months but can last for years and can recur. A few Papilloma viruses are known to cause cancer.
A very large wart on the foot.
A very large wart on the foot.

Possible treatments for warts include:

  • Cryosurgery, which involves freezing the wart, after which the wart and surrounding dead skin falls off by itself.
  • Cryosurgery followed by surgically removing the infected spot.
  • Treatment with chemical compounds, containing salicylic acid, blistering agents, or immune system modifiers
  • Laser treatment

None of these treatments are very effective on single uses; the wart often returns after the skin has healed from the treatment, but repeated treatment should rid the wart permanently. As they disappear after a few months and maximally a few years, treatment is necessary only if the lesions are painful or are a cosmetic problem.

A household remedy whose efficacy has been ratified by at least one study is placing a piece of duct tape (medical tape works too) over the affected area for a week at a time, and rubbing off the dead wart cells with a pumice stone or emery board between tapings. A study by Focht et al took a group of 60 patients and randomized them to either duct tape for two months or cryotherapy (6 treatments). The duct tape group had a clearance rate of 85% versus the cryotherapy group (60%). Of course, keeping duct tape on an area for that amount of time may have drawbacks in compliance.

Over-the-counter products typically employ the above technique combined with chemical treatment, usually involving salicylic acid. These products are readily available at any drug store or supermarket. There are typically two types of products: adhesive pads treated with salicylic acid or a bottle of concentrated salicylic acid. In order to remove the wart, one must follow a strict regimen of cleaning the area, applying the salicylic acid, and clearing the dead skin. It may take up to 12 weeks to remove a stubborn wart.

The following household remedy is recommended for three consecutive days: put the wart cells in hot water with washing liquid. It is difficult to prove whether the warts disappear because of the household remedy or by an immune reaction.

Particularly stubborn warts may need to be cut off completely, but this method should be used as a last resort, as it is painful and can lead to bacterial infection and/or scarring.

A method used mostly by Asian countries, is to burn the wart with incense. However, it is very painful and may damage the skin permanently.

Effective wart treatment and prevention of recurrence is heavily dependent on immune response, which seems to be highly susceptible to suggestion. This is likely a large factor in the success of many wart treatments, especially folk remedies. Some doctors exploit this effect by using hypnosis or "magical" treatments, sometimes in combination with more conventional treatments.

See also

External links

Home remedies

Disclaimer: Please be advised that the following methods may not be safe. Dermatologists may advise against such practices. Some warts do require medical attention. Studies have not shown that these methods are effective. It may not work for everyone. You are putting yourself at risk for any dangers or problems associated with the use of these items.

---When dealing with warts, be cautious not to spread it. Open cuts can welcome warts later on. Wash with soap and water before and after these procedures to prevent the virus from spreading to other locations.

  • Method 1: Lighter

1. Gently pick at the wart by prying the excess skin away. This will expose the inside of the wart. It may start bleeding. You may soften it prior by dipping the wart in warm water for a few minutes it will usually make this process easier.
2. Take a lighter and lightly flame the wart. Do not flame your skin! PLEASE DO NOT CAUSE ANY BURNS TO YOURSELF. If it hurts, stop. This process should not take more than 1-3 seconds.
3. Repeat daily.

  • Method 2: Electronics air duster (1,1-Difluoroethane, Dimethyl Ether)

1. You will need an electronics air duster, a piece of foam and a pin.
2. Depending on the size of the wart, cut the foam to fit the size of the wart. Cut enough so that the pin can stick in and become a handle.
3. Invert the air duster can and spray the cold liquid onto the foam. BE CAREFUL! The liquid is flammable and can cause frostbite when sprayed directly on the skin.
4. The foam will look frosty and smoke will occur from condensation.
5. Immediately Set the foam on the wart for NO LONGER THAN 10-20 seconds depending on the size of the wart. Wash foam for next time.
6. Repeat daily.

de:Warze fr:verrue nl:Wrat


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