Verrucae - what is it and what can you do about it?

Verrucae are plantar warts caused by the Human Papilloma Virus, or HPV as it is more commonly known. They can manifest in a number of different ways, ranging from a small, single lesion to a cluster or even in a mosaic pattern, most commonly on the soles of feet. Sometimes they can be painful, sometimes they can go un-noticed. In children, they tend to come and go rather quickly, however in adults they can be a lot more stubborn. Research states that the majority of verrucae in adults will disappear within two years however there are always cases in which this isn’t going to happen.

So, what can you do about it?

Firstly, you can always leave it alone and do nothing. If your lesion isn’t painful and isn’t really bothering you aesthetically, you can just leave it. Obviously there is the risk of it spreading to your other foot or to other people, so be aware of this if barefoot and when drying feet with towels etc.

If you’re not convinced you would like to get it treated but it does cause pain, you could try filing or sanding the area. More often than not, the discomfort comes from the build up of callus over the verruca. So, reducing that may can reduce the pain you are getting when walking.

If you really want to get rid of it, you can always come and get it treated by your podiatrist. You should be aware that as it is a virus, there is no cure so the treatment is not 100% guaranteed to work. It is rare that it is unsuccessful, however it is worth noting that before making the decision. The treatment would involve coming back (usually) weekly to get the treatment taken off and reapplied. Of course, you could always have just one treatment and see how you go. It is entirely your choice how you wish to proceed.


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