What are warts?

Warts are small grainy looking growths that usually occur on the fingers and/or hands. They are rough to the tough and sometimes have a pattern of tiny black dots. Those are actually tiny blood vessels.

What causes warts?

The most common warts are caused by a virus- the human papillomavirus (HPV) virus. One type causes warts on the hands and fingers, another type causes warts on the feet, and others cause warts on other areas of the body.

You can get warts if you touch people who have warts. You can also spread warts from one area of your own body to another. You can also get warts if you touch something that another person with warts has touched, like a towel or equipment at the gym. The virus enters your body through breaks in the skin. Children, young adults, and people with a lower immune system are most apt to develop warts.

What are the treatments?

Believe it or not, most warts will go away without any treatment, although it may take a year or two. Because they are so contagious, new warts may develop close to the older ones. For that reason, many people choose to have warts removed by a doctor.

Depending upon the location of the warts, there are several different treatments available. Some are used in combination with home treatments. Each treatment is designed to do two things:

  1. Destroy the wart
  2. Activate the immune system to fight the virus that caused the warts

Treatments include varying strengths of acids that cause layers of the wart to gradually come off, freezing the wart and laser treatments, although not all physicians agree with the effectiveness of lasers in this context.

If you or your children have warts come to see our physicians. We can treat them effectively and ensure that you build a strong immune system as well.