Plantar Wart: Removal, Symptoms, Causes

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Plantar Wart: Treatment and Prevention

Warts that develop on the sole of the foot are caused by an infection from certain strains of the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV).

They can appear anywhere on the feet and are not pressure-related, but most plantar warts, or verruca warts, do show up on your heels or other weight-bearing areas.

While they might not seem like a health risk, they are contagious and can cause pain. Thus, we advise you to consult with a podiatrist to treat it.

The more familiar you are with your condition, the easier for us at Dr Foot to help you find the right course of action. So, keep reading to know exactly what you are dealing with!

What are the Symptoms of Plantar Warts?

plantar wart

Plantar warts are one of the more common skin infections. They come in two varieties:

  • Solitary wart: A single plantar wart that frequently becomes bigger and could eventually lead to more warts if left untreated.

  • Mosaic warts: A collection of numerous little warts that grow closely in one area. Treatment for mosaic warts is more challenging than for solitary warts.

When you first get a plantar wart, you might frequently experience what feels like a stone in your shoes when you step on the bottom of your foot.

Other symptoms you should keep an eye out for include the following:

  • A rough and spongy appearance on the base of the toes, on the balls and heels of the feet.

  • The growths can appear fleshy and rough.

  • The fleshy part can look like tiny black dots. These pinpoints are tiny blood vessels that have clotted, commonly called wart seeds.

  • A collection of growths on the sole of the foot (mosaic warts).

  • If the plantar wart has grown inward, thickened skin can grow over the wart and show up as a callus instead.

  • Pain or tenderness when standing or walking.

  • The growth may be of lighter colour on dark skin than on unaffected skin.

What are the Causes of Plantar Warts?

skin irritation

Plantar warts are caused by HPV. The virus attacks the bottoms of the feet, which causes the top layer of skin to grow quickly and develop into a fleshy, raised lesion.

The virus thrives in warm, damp surroundings.

Therefore, most people get it in communal spaces, like swimming pools and public showers, where it enters your body through a cut or other breach in the skin.

Anyone can get plantar warts, but not everyone who comes in contact with the HPV virus will develop a plantar wart, as each person's immune system reacts differently to the virus strains.

Risk Factors

However, there are a few factors that can make you more likely to get a plantar wart:

  • Children and teenagers are more frequently exposed to public places, and their immune system is still developing.

  • People with a weakened immune system

  • People who often walk barefoot in communal spaces, particularly where the virus thrives

  • People who frequently have cuts. abrasion or skin conditions on their feet

What are the Complications of Plantar Warts?

About half the cases of common warts will go away on their own.

However, if you ignore a serious case, it can lead to certain complications:

  • Changes in posture or normal gait if a painful wart alters the way you stand, walk, or run and causes muscle or joint discomfort.

  • Prolonged discomfort and suffering that require more significant treatment later on.

  • The human papillomavirus could spread to other areas of the body.

  • You could spread the infection to others.

How Can You Prevent Plantar Warts?

verruca plantaris

A plantar wart can be very inconvenient for your daily life. So you should learn how to prevent warts in the first place!

The following tips may help you prevent getting warts:

  • Avoid walking barefoot in common areas like swimming pools, locker rooms, or dorms.

  • If you are younger than 26 years old, ask your healthcare professional about receiving the HPV vaccine. Though additional research is necessary, it might aid in wart prevention.

  • Wear clean socks and shoes as often as possible.

  • Try to keep your feet clean and dry.

  • Avoid direct contact with those who already have warts.

If you already have a wart:

  • Change your shoes and sock frequently, and clean them properly

  • Cover the wart and wash your hands frequently as you can spread it to other parts of your body, and to other people.

  • Do not pick or scrape the warts. It will only worsen the condition and make it last longer.

How Can You Treat Plantar Warts?

remove warts with salicylic acid

You should seek treatment immediately if you want to removes warts, especially if you want to avoid the wart tissue from further spreading.

Although there are home and over-the-counter remedies to treat warts, you should invest in proper medical treatment so that you can have your healthy skin back.

At Dr Foot Podiatry Clinic, we offer the best wart removal treatments with minimal pain and optimal results.

In-clinic Chemical Treatments

Depending on the size of the plantar wart and the duration of the illness, you might need numerous treatments.

Sometimes, in addition to these chemical therapies, we may prescribe medications or ointments for you to use between treatment sessions.

Silver Nitrate

As it is a gentle chemical treatment, your podiatrist would first remove the wart tissue to reveal the blood supply before treating it with silver nitrate.

Debridement and chemical application result in tissue harm in an effort to activate the immune response of the body.

Salicylic Acid

After debridement, the lesion is treated with this chemical, which removes the plantar wart layer by layer.

Similar to silver nitrate, the substance reacts with the skin, triggering a response from the immune system to build new healthy skin cells in the area.


Cryotherapy is a treatment that involves freezing the wart. Liquid nitrogen is directly applied to the wart, either with a spray or swab.

The liquid nitrogen will form a blister around the wart, and the dead tissue will eventually fall off.

Verruca Needling

Verruca needling is a procedure in which a tiny needle is used to prick the verruca or wart. This is purposely done to cause bleeding and to trigger the body's immune system to fight the infection.

Get Rid of Plantar Warts with the Best Podiatrist in Singapore

treatment plan

At Dr Foot, we aim to give our patients the highest quality of care. We strongly believe that everyone is entitled to healthy and strong feet.

Our clinic offers a more convenient and accessible alternative to lengthy hospital waiting lists for patients who need assistance with their feet.

Our expert professional podiatrist will recommend the best treatment options for you according to your condition and personal needs,

If you think you might have plantar warts, or have any inquiries, schedule an appointment with us now!

Enquire with us now