Got Warts? When to See Your Dermatologist for TreatmentAug 21, 2020
Warts are benign skin growths that show up when a virus (human papillomavirus, HPV, is the most common) infects the top layer of the skin. They often look like small, rough growth on a person’s hands or feet, but can also appear on other parts of the body.
Warts can appear flat or raised and others grow in large clusters. They’re usually harmless, but some strains of HPV are associated with other health complications. Wart viruses are contagious and can spread by direct contact, usually entering the body in an area of broken skin.
When should you see your dermatologist for wart removal?
Sometimes a wart will disappear on its own, but it may take months or even years. Most people prefer some type of wart removal since warts can be bothersome and even painful. In many cases, warts can be treated at home.
Common methods for self-treatment include covering the wart with duct tape or applying salicylic acid, but it’s always best to consult your dermatologist before trying any at-home remedies. The most effective treatment for warts is to have them by a trained dermatologist.
The American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) recommends visiting your dermatologist if you have any of the following:
- Any doubt that the skin growth is a wart, as some skin cancers resemble warts
- A wart that appears on your face or genitals
- Several warts
- A wart that is painful, itchy, burns or bleeds
- A weak immune system
Because HPV is contagious, you’ll want to take a few extra precautions to keep it from spreading:
- Avoid scratching or picking your warts.
- Wear shoes in public places such as showers, locker rooms or pools.
- Never touch another person’s wart.
- Keep warts on the feet dry to prevent moisture from spreading the virus.
If your warts continue and are painful, or if you have several warts, you should visit your dermatologist. There are many treatment options available for warts, including laser treatment or freezing, among others. Your dermatologist can help you determine the best treatment option for your specific type of wart.
Since there is no permanent cure for HPV, warts can redevelop. In this case, it’s best to have your dermatologist treat the new wart as soon as it appears. Warts are a common and frustrating condition affecting both children and adults. Contact our office today and learn how you can wipe out your warts!
About Center for Dermatology in Lakeville, Minnesota
The dermatology professionals at the Center for Dermatology are pleased to welcome you to our practice. We provide medical, surgical and cosmetic dermatology services in Lakeville, MN. Life can be hectic, so are committed to making our practice convenient and accessible.
You can feel confident that when you choose the Center for Dermatology, you’re working with health care professionals who are qualified, experienced and caring. We invite you to schedule an appointment for your next skin check and we look forward to meeting you!