Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"How do I get rid of my wart?"
It's a plantar wart, it is on my foot, and is medium-sized. I would like a non- painful solution. -I can't handle a painful remedy.
I'm sorry to hear about this! It is important for you to confirm the diagnosis with your primary care doctor, who will then be able to suggest the best treatment options for you. Plantar warts are caused by a viral infection of the skin, just like most other kinds of warts that might occur on the hands or elsewhere. Unfortunately, there aren't any good medications that just kill off the virus and the wart. Most treatments for warts rely, instead, on irritating the skin surrounding the wart so that the body's own immune system "wakes up" and kills off the virus directly. This is the basic principle of most over the counter wart medications, including salicylic acid, which is probably the most common ingredient of things that are called "wart remover" or "wart preparation" in the corresponding aisle of your local pharmacy or supermarket. If your doctor recommends it, most of these medications work fairly well, actually, as long as you follow the directions closely and are persistent with the treatment. However, in order for the medications to be effective, you have to first "exfoliate" the wart gently (say, after a bath or shower), because if not the thick skin on top of the wart will keep the medication from penetrating. Again, I would recommend first confirming the diagnosis with your primary care doctor. Once confirmed, your doctor will be able to tell you whether the over the counter remedies are appropriate or whether you will need a stronger prescription medication.
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