Of foot warts or plantar warts few people are not affected. The warts caused by viruses are usually very irregular and harmless. Some types of warts can cause pain on the soles of the feet to varying degrees, which mainly appear when they occur.
What are foot warts?
According to POLYHOBBIES, plantar warts or sole warts are also called plantar warts. These are benign skin growths or swellings in the skin, which can be very different in shape. They can be completely flat or raised and usually occur on the soles of the feet, balls of the feet and the undersides of the toes.
A common type of plantar wart is the so-called plantar wart. These warts occur individually and can grow very deep into the tissue. A visible black point, the so-called thorn, is characteristic of these plantar warts. This is often covered by the cornea and causes mild to severe stabbing pain when stepping on or pressing on the affected area.
Plantar warts are triggered by an infection with viruses, more precisely it is the genus of the human papillomavirus. There are over 100 different subspecies of the papilloviruses.
The infection occurs directly through contact via a smear infection, both via affected people and with infected objects. The pathogens penetrate the smallest skin injuries or damage to the mucous membrane in the body and warts develop. The risk of infection is enormously increased, especially when using places where people walk barefoot a lot.
These include, above all, swimming pools, saunas and changing rooms in sports halls. Especially in swimming pools and saunas, the warm, humid climate favors the spread of viruses and the absorption of pathogens.
Symptoms, ailments & signs
In contrast to other warts, foot warts usually grow into the tissue because they are pressed into the tissue by the high body pressure. They are located on the heels, toes or balls of the feet below the callus. There they often cause violent stabbing pains when standing or walking, which feel as if they come from a thorn that has been kicked in.
This is why the plantar warts are also known as plantar warts. The plantar warts appear on the soles of the feet as flat skin changes that are gray or brownish-yellow in color. Often they stand alone. If the callus is not too thick, small dark dots can be seen on the affected area of the skin. This is a small amount of bleeding into the skin.
If the plantar warts do not reach too deep into the tissue, they can also remain painless. However, when their extensions reach the dermis or the fatty and connective tissue in the subcutaneous tissue, the extensions irritate the nerve endings and thus lead to severe stabbing pain.
As with all warts, foot warts are also infected with the HP virus, which can also heal on its own. However, treatment should be given if the foot warts cause pain or increase. This therapy is very tedious. Furthermore, it cannot be ruled out that recurrences may occur despite successful treatment.
Diagnosis & course
After being infected with the virus, nothing often happens for several months. The first symptom is usually tenderness with no apparent cause. Because in most cases, plantar warts are hidden under the layers of the cornea. In the further course, the affected skin area can change visibly.
Depending on the type of wart, the skin can be colored and visibly changed in different ways. These can be red or brown spots and stripes caused by bleeding, or white discoloration of the skin. A furrow can also arise between the cornea and the actual wart, this is the demarcation of the growth from the healthy skin.
While some plantar warts cause pain, other types tend to cause itching. However, many types of warts do not cause any discomfort. The diagnosis is made by assessing the affected areas. By asking the patient about the exact symptoms, the doctor can ensure the diagnosis.
Foot warts can cause a variety of complications that should usually be examined by a doctor. Affected people who suffer from a wart should always consult a doctor in the event of external changes in the wart. If you do not seek medical treatment, there is a risk of various complications.
Under certain circumstances, foot warts can start bleeding if they are scratched open. This can lead to profuse bleeding, so that the open wound can become infected with bacteria. There is a risk of inflammation, which can lead to severe pain. Even the formation of pus fluid is possible.
At the latest at the first signs of pus, a doctor should be consulted as soon as possible. Anyone who refrains from treatment by a doctor at this point must also expect serious complications. It can develop into an abscess or blood poisoning.
When should you go to the doctor?
It is always advisable to consult a doctor if you have warts on your feet. This can initiate the removal of the warts in a few steps so that healing is guaranteed as quickly as possible. Small warts that are symptom-free can often be removed independently. There are suitable preparations with detailed instructions for correct treatment in drugstores or pharmacies. In addition, pharmacists provide important information on how to use the products correctly.
However, it is advisable to consult a doctor in order to avoid unnecessary complications. If the warts spread on the feet or if existing warts enlarge, a doctor should be consulted. If the warts cause discomfort with the usual movement sequences, the occurrence and rolling of the foot or a poor posture of the body, a doctor’s visit is necessary.
A doctor is needed in the event of pain, open wounds or the additional formation of calluses on the feet. If the affected person suffers from general malaise or disgust due to the warts in the feet or feels sick, a doctor should be consulted. If there is a social withdrawal behavior or if the warts lead to a noticeable change in behavior, it is necessary to consult a doctor. If the warts on the feet become inflamed, medical care should be sought immediately.
Treatment & Therapy
There are different methods of treating plantar warts, depending on the type of wart and the severity of the symptoms. Preparations containing salicylic acid are used for the local treatment of plantar warts. This can be tinctures, ointments or plasters. The salicylic acid is said to cause an inflammatory reaction in the body, and when it is combated by the body itself, the wart is also killed. This method of treatment is not always successful and can take several weeks.
In addition, freezing of the affected skin area comes into consideration in order to kill the wart. This method is called cryotherapy. Here, liquid nitrogen is used, which is specifically pressed onto the wart and causes the upper layer of skin to die off. In particularly serious cases, surgery may be necessary.
This is the case, for example, when the wart protrudes very deep into the tissue and thus causes severe discomfort. For this invasive procedure, a local anesthetic is used and the wart tissue is then scraped off. The removal of the plantar warts using a laser is also often used today.
In practice, self-healing is also observed again and again without therapy having taken place. In these cases, the immune system successfully fights the responsible viruses, the wart dries up and disappears. With all plantar warts, the risk of recurrence is very high. Those who were previously affected are usually affected by plantar warts at irregular intervals.
There is no reliable method to prevent plantar warts. The pathogens are very widespread and everyone comes into contact with them in the course of their life. The outbreak occurs in situations in which the immune system is weakened. Good hygiene measures after using public facilities such as swimming pools and sports halls, as well as avoiding walking barefoot in these places, however, reduce the risk of infection.
↳ Additional information: Home remedies for warts
After a surgical removal, the foot should be spared for up to two weeks, depending on the size of the wart. This means avoiding frequent occurrences and other stresses. Regularly elevating the affected foot promotes wound healing. A breathable sock (ideally made of cotton) should be worn over the bandage. Warm and humid climates in socks or shoes must be prevented in order not to provide a basis for infections.
Going barefoot should also be avoided at all costs so that no germs or other pathogens can penetrate the wound and cause inflammation. As with any wound, good hygiene (washing hands before coming into contact with the wound, changing socks regularly, using clean towels) is essential.
Follow-up care also includes regular examinations by the surgeon and dressing changes. If complications such as inflammation or fever occur, he is the first point of contact apart from the regular check-ups. The treatment is completed by pulling the threads.
In addition to stress, moisture, sauna and solarium visits are counterproductive for wound healing. The foot is only fully resilient again when the wound healing is complete: The wound should be closed, not oozing and no longer crusted. To prevent re-infection, it is advisable to wear rubber shoes in swimming pools or other sports facilities. An intact immune system also plays an important role.
You can do that yourself
People who have warts, or who tend to suffer from them frequently, should ensure that they wear healthy footwear. Foreign bodies in the footwear are to be avoided. There should also be no pressure points on the feet when wearing closed or open shoes.
Existing warts should not be opened or intentionally damaged. The escaping body fluid causes the warts to spread. There are various care products and aids available on the market that can be used for existing warts. Plasters or tinctures can be used on small warts independently and without medical assistance. The foot care should be checked and optimized. If you sweat heavily under your feet, we recommend using body powder to absorb the liquid.
Regularly changing and disinfecting the hosiery is necessary so that the germs cannot spread any further. In addition, the shoes you wear should also be disinfected regularly. Going barefoot should be avoided in public baths or showers. Protective clothing such as flip-flops help prevent further infection for yourself and others.
Despite the presence of warts on the feet, attention should be paid to poor posture of the body. If the foot can no longer be put down as usual or rolled while moving, there is a risk of permanent damage to the skeletal system.