Warts are caused by a virus that invades and changes normal skin cells. When
this happens, the wart grows inward and outward, and attracts a direct blood supply that makes the wart very hard to kill. The living wart cells are in the very bottom of the lesion that could be called the “root”.
Characteristics of Warts
Warts are extremely unpredictable and may respond to treatment as expected or fail to respond, regrow, or appear in adjacent sites. All treatments involve destruction of the basement layer of skin cells where reproducing viral wart cells are located. Several treatment options were explained.
- Topical over the counter acids including salicylic acid and urea require daily applications and weekly debridement. Used alone they have a poor success rate.
- Topical antiviral prescriptions such as Vircin and Efudex in combination can inhibit the growth of the virus and shrink the wart. It is frequently used in combination with cryotherapy.
- Liquid Nitrogen Cryotherapy is painful, usually requires local anesthesia injections, sometimes causes blistering, deep wounds, and scarring. Used alone, Cryotherapy has a relatively poor success rate.
- Topical Cantherone applied to the wart will make it blister. It is usually painful when the blister forms. The blister will remove the superficial layers of wart. The root usually remains and must be frozen off using Cryotherapy.
- Sharp surgical excision of the lesion with or without primary closure. Advantages include short treatment time and good success rate. Disadvantages include need for injection and local anesthesia and possible scar. IV sedation is sometimes used if the patient cannot tolerate injections in the foot.
- The most commonly used treatment is Topical Vircin and Efudex in combination applied to the warts by the patient and covered by duct tape. The Doctor will trim off the outer layers of wart usually after two weeks of daily Vircin and Efudex combined application by the patient. The Doctor will use Verruca Freeze to freeze the root using “freeze-thaw” technique. This treatment is usually completely pain free, does not cause physical or emotional trauma to the patient, allows the patient to continue normal activities during the treatment period, and has a high success rate with a low incidence of discomfort or complications.