You can get warts at any age and nearly anywhere on your body. Plantar warts are very common and appear on the soles of your feet, heels, or between your toes. They can look small from the outside, but they usually reach deep into the hypodermis.
Plantar warts are usually flush against your skin's surface because of the pressure on your feet when you stand. You may feel like you have small rocks stuck in your shoes when you walk, with pain ranging from mild to severe.
At Jordan Valley Dermatology Center in South Jordan, Utah, dermatologist Douglass Forsha, MD, and our skilled team treat uncomfortable plantar warts. We create a customized treatment plan that works for you so you can have your warts treated in our office or at home.
What are plantar warts?
If you have painful warts on your feet, they’re probably plantar warts. These growths usually colonize the soles of the feet or heels and sometimes the space between the toes.
Plantar warts appear as a thorn-like, heavily calloused, flat area on the underside of the foot. They hardly protrude beyond the skin's surface but far into the subcutis, causing pain when walking.
Why you should treat plantar warts
Consistent treatment is worthwhile, especially if plantar warts cause pain.
Although plantar warts are generally harmless, they often cause discomfort when walking and may contribute to poor posture because you step on the affected foot carefully and differently to avoid putting pressure on the wart.
Over time, this altered gait can cause long-term consequences, such as an abnormal foot position and/or injury.
How we treat plantar warts
Dr. Forsha and our team offer various treatment options for warts. In-office treatments include cryotherapy (freezing),and minor surgery.
Cryotherapy is one of the most popular and successful methods of wart removal. Freezing the wart kills the skin cells and the viruses that cause them. Dr. Forsha applies cold therapy to a localized area, freezing and destroying the diseased tissue and leaving it to fall off on its own.
We can also remove plantar warts with minor surgery if plantar warts keep returning. It’s a safe method for permanently removing the plantar wart.
In some cases, we prescribe medications like retinoids or antiviral medications to kill the virus and stop the wart from growing. You can also use salicylic acid, an over-the-counter topical product to treat your warts.
When to see a doctor
You should have a doctor look at plantar warts that won’t go away or continue returning even with treatment.
Consider skipping home treatments and make an appointment with us right away if you have
- Severe discomfort
- A weakened immune system
- Solid black or brown warts
- Changes in the way you walk
You should always seek medical advice if your plantar warts worsen or interfere with your daily activities.
Despite not being dangerous, warts can be unsightly and spread easily. Call Jordan Valley Dermatology Center for expert wart treatment at any age.