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Common Warts - Definition, Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

 

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Common warts are benign growths on the skin or mucous membranes that cause cosmetic problems as well as pain and discomfort. Common warts can be annoying to anyone. Warts are passed from person to person, often indirectly. Warts on the skin may be passed to another person when that person touches the wart. It usually takes several months for a wart to appear if transmission occurs. It is also possible to get warts from using towels or other objects that were used by a person who has warts. Common warts are also called "seed" warts due to the blood vessels around the wart producing black dots that look like seeds. Common warts are usually painless. Children and teenagers are usually affected by warts because their still-developing immune system does not recognize or fight the wart virus. This changes as they age. Each person's immune system responds to warts differently, meaning not everyone who comes in contact with HPV develops warts. Biting your nails can also cause warts to spread on your fingertips and around your nails.

Common warts are not cancerous. Most common warts don't require medical treatment, but some people choose to have their warts treated because they are bothersome, spreading or a cosmetic concern. For the typical healthy person warts are a harmless problem. Warts can itch or bleed. When warts are located in areas that are rubbed against clothing or bumped frequently, they can become irritated and the skin around them can become painful. Common warts are not related to cancer and they do not involve internal organs. The best precaution against plantar warts is not to go barefoot in locker rooms, poolside, or in hotels. Warts don't require treatment, but you may want to treat them for cosmetic purposes and to prevent their spread. Home treatment is often effective in curing warts. Salicylic acid, an over-the-counter medication, or even duct tape and patience may be enough to resolve warts.

Causes of Common warts

The human papilloma virus causes plantar warts. The virus attacks the skin through direct contact. Normally, antibodies in the blood kill the virus. Some people are more susceptible to the human papilloma virus than others. Like other infectious diseases, wart viruses pass from person to person. You can also get the wart virus by touching a towel or object used by someone who has the virus. Each person's immune system responds to warts differently, meaning not everyone who comes in contact with HPV develops warts. Warts usually spread through breaks in your skin, such as a hangnail or scrape. Biting your nails can also cause warts to spread on your fingertips and around your nails.

Common causes and risk factors of Common warts:

  • Human papillomavirus.
  • Touching a towel or object used by someone who has the virus.
  • Use of public showers.
  • Weakened immune system because of certain drugs used or illness.
  • Skin trauma.

Signs and Symptoms of Common warts

Common warts are usually painless. Young adults and children appear to be affected most often. Common warts are firm and can be light gray, yellow, brown or gray-black. They occur most often near the fingernails and on the backs of the hands, but they also can appear on the elbows and knees. Common warts usually do not hurt. Warts may occur singly or in multiples. They often contain one or more tiny black dots, which are sometimes called wart seeds but are actually small, clotted blood vessels.

Sign and symptoms may include the following :

  • Small, fleshy, grainy bumps.
  • Rough surface and well-defined borders.
  • Abnormally dark or light skin surrounding the lesion.
  • Feels like a lump under the foot
  • Smooth surface with a gray-yellow or brown color.

Treatment for Common warts

Treatment depends on the location of the wart, its type and size, a person's age and health, and his or her willingness to follow through with repeated treatments. Home treatment is often effective in curing warts. Salicylic acid, an over-the-counter medication, or even duct tape and patience may be enough to resolve warts. A wart may be treated by applying certain medications or acids, freezing it (cryotherapy) or surgically removing it. Moist patches are often the easiest and most effective products to use. They are placed on a wart for forty-eight hours. Then they are replaced with a new patch. In some cases, the patch may irritate the skin. In that case, the person should switch to a milder medication or stop treatment for a while.

Treatment may include:

  • Over-the-counter liquids and patches containing salicylic acid can decrease the size of a wart, but they should not be used on the face or genitals.
  • Laser treatment may be used for warts that are stubborn and haven't gone away with other kinds of treatment. A tiny laser can be used to zap a plantar wart or other wart.
  • Your doctor may treat a wart by applying certain medications or acids, freezing it or surgically removing it.
  • Immunotherapy, done by injecting a substance that causes an allergic reaction, may also be considered by your doctor.
  • Surgery is sometimes used to remove a wart. It's not a doctor's first choice because it can leave scar.