By Savannah Faulk, DPT
What Are Plantar Warts?
The quick answer is that plantar warts are hard, coarse growths that can appear on the bottom of your feet. They are known to be caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV) and can be painful. The majority of these warts aren’t very serious and typically will go away without treatment but some will also stick around and will continue to grow if left untreated.
What are Home Remedies for Plantar Warts?
Over the counter medication is available. These medications can come and be applied as a gel, lotion, ointment, or freezing spray. The freezing spray is known to work instantly and is very similar to the freeze methods that MDs’ use. What you should also know is that these remedies are not 100% effective/curable and may not remove the wart or warts at all.
If the home remedy and over the counter medications do not work the next step is to visit the MD. They will typically freeze the wart off with liquid nitrogen and/or they could also remove the wart by laser and/or with surgery.
Plantar warts do not usually go away quickly and easily. Some will require a couple of treatment sessions to officially go away. Plantar warts also have the ability to reappear.
What Causes a Plantar Wart?
Plantar warts are known to be caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV) which is considered an infection in the outer layer of your skin on the bottom of your feet. These warts develop when the virus enters the body through cuts or gashes on the feet. These types of warts are very common and there are over 100 types of this virus that are existent.
Can You Dig Out a Plantar Wart?
It would not be suggested and/or recommended to dig out a wart as it could cause severe pain and more problems down the road. Plantar warts typically lie under the skin tissue on the bottom of the foot and trying to dig them out would cause more underlying issues. In the majority of warts you can see a black dot in the middle which is a blood vessel so trying to cut out a wart can cause harm.
What Happens if I Don’t Treat a Plantar Wart?
If a plantar wart is left untreated they may start growing bigger in perimeter and can also spread into groups. These groups are called mosaic and they can be very tender. They have the ability to affect the proper way of walking as well as posture which can lead to other impairments down the road.
How Long Do Plantar Warts Last?
These plantar warts can last anywhere between 2 months-1 year depending if left treated or untreated. Some warts may go away completely without treatment and some may not go away completely even with treatment. Warts are also known to grow back in time depending on the severity.
Where Do I Go to Get Treatment for a Plantar Wart?
The quick answer is:
- Actual Plantar Wart freezing or removal – PCP, Dermatologist, or Podiatrist
- Walking issues from Plantar Warts – JOI Physical Therapist
- Other Orthopedic Issues related to the foot or ankle – JOI Orthopedic Foot & Ankle Specialist
Plantar Warts are typically treated by a Primary Care Doctor, a Dermatologist, or a Podiatrist. To learn about the types of Foot Doctors, this ARTICLE may help.
Where Do I Go If I Have Foot, Ankle, or Other Orthopedic Problems?
If a Plantar Wart causes you to walk differently, it can lead to knee, ankle, or even back pain. In these situations a JOI physical therapist can help. The Jacksonville Orthopedic Institute Rehabilitation is the area’s leader in treating ankle, knee, hip, and back pain. If you have pain that has developed, we can help. We have 12 Rehabilitation Offices for your convenience.
If you have other foot or ankle problems, JOI has Board Certified Orthopaedic Ankle and Foot Specialists that can help. From Plantar Fasciitis, to Achilles tendon issues, JOI has the answers! JOI offers ASAP appointment and telemedicine visits so that you can be seen quickly.
If you would like to learn about Plantar Fasciitis, this VIDEO may help.
To schedule an appointment with a JOI Orthopedic Specialist, call JOI-2000, schedule online, or click the link below.