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Warts

What is a Wart?

Warts are benign (not cancerous) skin growths that appear when a virus infects the top layer of the skin. Viruses that cause warts are called human papillomavirus (HPV). You are more likely to get one of these viruses if you cut or damage your skin in some way. Wart viruses are contagious. Warts can spread by contact with the wart or something that touched the wart. Warts are often skin-colored and feel rough, but they can be dark (brown or gray-black), flat, and smooth.

What are the types of Warts?

There are several types of warts that vary based on the affected body part. The types of warts include:

  • Common Warts—small, flesh-colored, grainy, rough to the touch skin growths that occur most commonly on fingers and hands
  • Plantar and Palmar Warts—occurring on the palms and foot soles, these warts are usually small, can grow in clusters and are often mistaken for corns or calluses
  • Flat Warts—small, very slightly raised bumps that are smooth and often clustered, generally occurring on the face or legs
  • Filiform Warts—featuring long, narrow projections that extend one or two millimeters from the skin, these warts tend to form around the eyelids and lips and can be yellow, brown, pink or flesh-toned
  • Periungual Warts—forming around fingernails and toenails, these warts start small and transform over time into rough, dirty-looking bumps that can resemble cauliflower
  • Genital Warts - Genital warts are a common sexually transmitted infection caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV). If you suspect you have genital warts, it is important to seek medical attention from a healthcare professional, such as a dermatologist or gynecologist, who can provide proper diagnosis and treatment options. Some types of genital warts caused by HPV can lead to an increased risk of certain types of cancer, such as cervical, anal, and penile cancer.
  • Condyloma acuminata, commonly known as genital warts, is a sexually transmitted infection caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV). Symptoms may include small, flesh-colored bumps or growths in the genital or anal area. Some types of genital warts caused by HPV can lead to an increased risk of certain types of cancer, such as cervical, anal, and penile cancer.

What is the treatments for Warts? 

Most common warts go away without treatment. If the warts don’t go away, or are bothersome, your healthcare provider may recommend the following treatments:

  • Over-the-counter wart medicines.
  • Salicylic acid. This prescription-strength wart medication removes layers of the wart a little bit at a time.
  • Freezing (cryotherapy). During cryotherapy, a physician will apply liquid nitrogen to your wart. The liquid nitrogen causes a blister to form under and around your wart. Over time, the dead tissue from the wart will fall off.
  • Acid treatments. Aside from salicylic acid, your physician may try stronger acids to remove the warts.
  • Laser treatment. During a laser treatment, your physician will use a small laser to burn tiny blood vessels surrounding the wart. The infected tissue eventually dies and the wart will fall off. This treatment may cause pain and scarring.

To schedule an appointment with Dr. Greenberg, please contact our office at (941) 282-3376. Our staff will be happy to assist you in scheduling a visit at your convenience.