What are Plantar Warts ?

Plantar warts are also called papilloma, verrucae, plantar verrucae or verrucae pedis. Even though "plantar" means "bottom" of the foot the term plantar warts is used to refer to warts anywhere on the feet. They can be singular, multiple or form a mosaic type pattern. Warts are caused by a virus called the human papilloma virus. The virus can live outside the body however there needs to be a break in the skin (which may be microscopic) for it to infect the host.

The virus causes a deeper layer of the skin to grow rapidly to the surface dragging blood vessels and nerve endings with it.  This can cause black or brown spots to dis-colour the skin as the blood vessels break.  If the wart is on the bottom of the foot the wart will usually be very flat and there will be more below the skin surface.

Who gets Plantar Warts ?

Plantar warts are common in young people, older persons and people with depressed immune systems. It is believed that warts are more easily transmitted in wet areas such as common bathing areas. Plantar warts can be easily miss-diagnosed as a corn or callus so it is important to be properly diagnosed by a foot care professional such as a podiatrist.

What are Signs & Symptoms of Plantar Warts ?

    • A "splinter" that you can't seem to get out
    • A lump on or under the foot (which may grow larger or spread)
    • Little black/brown dots in the lump
    • Pain when the wart is squeezed
    • "Foot print" lines are distorted where the wart is located
    • Cauliflower type appearance of the warty tissue (may be flat if underneath the foot)

What are the Treatments Choices for Plantar Warts ?

At Irymple Foot Clinic we suggest the most simple, least expensive methods to help give you relief and keep you mobile. Some of the treatments that may be suggested to you are:

    • No treatment/monitor
    • Chemical cautery (silver nitrate, salicylic and monochloracetic acid (under Medical supervision))
    • Cryotherapy
    • Dry Needling
    • Surgical removal
    • Referral to a dermatologist

Your 'wart' may be something else so if you are not sure please make an appointment to see us at Irymple Foot Clinic!

warts Plantar Wart under child's heel