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A wart is an infection caused by a virus, which can invade your skin through small cuts or breaks. Walking barefoot in public places increases your chance of becoming infected. Over time the wart develops into a hard, rough growth on the surface of the skin. A wart is most commonly seen on the bottom of the foot but can also appear on the top. They may appear spongy, with tiny red, brown or black spots. They can grow up to an inch or more across, occurring alone (solitary) or with smaller warts clustered nearby (mosaic). Warts are sometimes mistaken for corns or calluses. They can persist for years and recur in the same spot.
Treatment consists of applying a medicine called Cantharone Plus, which when applied forms a blister. This cuts off the warts blood supply. A blood blister with fluid in it is normal after application of the Cantharone Plus can cause pain to occur after application for 2-3 days. The application is painless. You will need to keep your foot dry for 24 hours after application and then there are no restrictions. It may take 2-3 applications spaced about 11 days apart to completely get rid of the wart. After 10 days or so the blister should fall off and the skin under the blister should be normal. Cold water foot soaks, elevation, Motrin or Tylenol and ice packs can be used to reduce the pain. You can lance the blister to relieve the pressure and the pain if you have severe pain. A topical medication called Gordofilm that has an acid is available to use as well and this can be applied two times a day to make the wart go away.
Alternatively a laser can take off the wart. The wart will have to be anesthetized prior to removal but the procedure doesn’t hurt and there is little to no pain after the procedure is done. The wound heals rapidly and usually only one treatment is necessary. You will need to wash your foot daily with a special sterilizing soap to prevent infection or use a wound kit as well.
You will come back in about 11 days after each treatment option for re evaluation. Both methods allow you to walk on your feet immediately.
Post operative instructions for the laser procedure:
- Keep bandage clean, dry and intact until the morning after the procedure.
- Follow instructions on Amerigel wound kit for wound care.
- If you wanted to do the Epsom salt water option then soak foot in warm Epson salt water for 15 minutes with bandage on (1st time only). Soak twice daily for 15 minutes and cover with cloth band aid until your follow up appointment.
- Recipe for Epsom salt solution: 4 Tbs. Epsom salt per quart of warm water.
Post operative instructions for the Cantharone:
- Keep band aid on and dry for 24 hours, pain may occur after 2-3 hours and last for several days. Tylenol or Motrin can be taken for the pain.
- After 24 hours, you have no restrictions. A blister may form but this doesn’t require further care. If severe pain occurs you can lance the blister to drain it.