Warts have an assortment of popular myths, some of which aren’t particularly accurate. As a result, there are many people who do not know the true story behind these rather common viral growths. At Foot & Ankle Associates of Florida, we perform professional wart removal services for many of our patients, but having the right facts about plantar warts can reduce your risk of getting one in the first place.
Non-Amphibious Causes of Warts
It is simply untrue that plantar warts are caused by making direct contact with a frog or toad. In all likelihood, this myth simply started because of the physical similarity between the bumps found on certain toads and some warts. Instead, the virus that causes warts is known as the human papillomavirus (HPV). It tends to thrive in damp, warm environments. Areas like pool decks and gym locker rooms and showering areas are prime territory.
Even if you walk barefoot in places like those, it still requires a cut, scrape, weak spot, or break in the skin on the bottom of your foot for the virus to infect the body and cause a wart to develop. Further, HPV might be common, but there are more than 100 different strands of the virus, with only a few of them causing warts. Plus, a strand causing a plantar wart for one person might not for someone else (even if the two people are related). The virus is somewhat transferable from person to person via direct contact, but this doesn’t actually happen all that often.
Plantar Wart Symptoms
The most obvious symptom of the viral growth is simply the wart itself. Specific appearances vary based on the type of wart you have, but plantar warts often look like a rough, fleshy growth on the bottom of your foot. If you look at a wart closely, you might see black dots or spots. These are often thought to be the seeds of a wart, but this is another myth—warts do not have seeds. Instead, what you are observing is actually the ends of tiny, clotted blood vessels.
Generally speaking, warts are quite harmless. When they develop on the soles of the feet, though, symptoms can include discomfort, tenderness, and even pain experienced while walking or standing. If a wart changes appearance or color, be sure to contact Foot & Ankle Associates of Florida so we can examine it for you at one of our offices.
Wart Treatment Options
Yet another misconception about plantar warts is that they need to be treated, but the reality is they are usually harmless and will eventually go away on their own in time. That being said, their “harmless” nature doesn’t take into consideration any pain or discomfort while standing or walking. Also, it can take up to a couple of years for a wart to disappear on its own, so you will likely want to know about treatment options to take care of them sooner and prevent infecting others.
Wart removal kits that can be purchased at grocery stores and pharmacies, but they often use salicylic acid which can damage healthy skin around the wart. There is also debate within the medical community over their efficacy. Plantar warts, in particular, often lie beneath the skin, further reducing the odds such a kit will help the situation.
We are prepared to provide professional wart removal services for you and any of your family members who develop one of these viral growths. Our doctors can use prescription medication, surgery, and cryotherapy methods to effectively remove a wart for you.
Professional Plantar Wart Removal in Florida
While it is true warts are usually rather harmless and will go away in time, they can still be a source of discomfort, embarrassment, and further infection within your family. Instead of waiting up to a couple of years for a plantar wart to disappear on its own, come see our medical professionals at Foot & Ankle Associates of Florida. We provide effective wart removal services at our five Florida offices—Lake Mary, Kissimmee, Tavares, Altamonte Springs, and Orlando—so contact us today. Either call 407-339-7759, or 352-589-9550 (if you are calling from Lake County), or request an appointment online for any of our locations.