The human papillomavirus (HPV) causes warts. HPV usually enters through an injury, infecting the uppermost layer of skin and causing a small area of cells to grow quickly causing a wart to form. Warts can show up at any location on the body, and are very common among children and teens.
There are six basic types of warts:
- Common warts are dome-shaped and have a rough texture and a grayish-brown color. They are frequently seen on the hands.
- Plantar warts are patches of thickened skin with dark specks that occur on the soles of your feet.
- Flat warts are small; pink, yellow, or light brown; and grow on the face, legs, or arms. They have flat tops.
- Filiform warts are skin-colored growths with thread-like protrusions. They show up on the nose, mouth, or beard area.
- Periungual warts grow around and under fingernails and toenails. These bumps have a rough surface and uneven border and can alter the shape of the nail.
- Genital warts occur in the genital, anal, or groin area. They sometimes appear as a tiny cauliflower.
Warts are not generally a health threat and most resolve on their own in a few years. However, they can be symptomatic or unattractive. Sometimes they bleed or become sore if they are on the hands, feet, or where clothing rubs, and genital warts can be quite uncomfortable. Our board certified dermatologists can usually diagnose a wart visually. In some cases, a skin biopsy (a small tissue sample viewed under a microscope) may be beneficial to rule out other, more serious conditions.
Depending on its size and location, your wart may be removed by any of these methods, or a combination plan:
- Cryotherapy; freezing the wart with liquid nitrogen.
- Topical medication applied to the wart.
- Medication injected into it.
- Surgical excision; removing the wart with a scalpel.
- Electrosurgery; removal by electric current.
- Curettage; a surgical technique to scoop out the wart.
Often, multiple treatments are necessary, but fortunately these procedures are brief and well tolerated by most patients. Healing time is minimal for healthy individuals. Be aware, though, that with genital warts, treatment destroys the wart, not the internal virus that causes it. Therefore, warts may come back or appear elsewhere on the body.
Count on the Lupo Center for Aesthetic and General Dermatology
for discreet, effective wart removal.
Lupo Center for Aesthetic and General Dermatology
Mary P. Lupo, M.D. | Skylar A. Souyoul, M.D. - Connect on Linkedin
Our mission at the Lupo Center is to provide patients with innovative, effective and ethical care to make each person look and feel their personal best. To fulfill our goal, we provide state-of-the-art medical, surgical and cosmetic treatments to all patients.
Board certified dermatologist and clinical professor of dermatology Mary P. Lupo, MD has been a leader in the field of non-surgical rejuvenation since 1983. She travels internationally to teach her innovative techniques, and her reputation brings in patients from around the country. She started the first formal residency training program for injectables and peels in 1983 at Tulane Medical School and served as past president of Women’s Dermatologic Society, clinical professor of dermatology at Tulane and a founder of Cosmetic Boot Camp. Dr. Lupo holds membership in many prestigious dermatology associations, participates in clinical trials for approval of new drugs and devices and acts as an advisor for numerous aesthetic-minded companies.
Dr. Skylar Souyoul practices the full range of medical, surgical and aesthetic dermatology. During her dermatology training, she worked closely with Dr. Lupo to learn the “Lupo Process” for cosmetic injections and laser procedures. She works with her patients to create a skin care regimen, which may include in-office procedures as well as over-the-counter cosmeceutical or prescription treatments depending on the patient’s needs. Dr. Souyoul continues to remain current on the most cutting-edge treatments so she can provide her patients with individualized treatments and optimal results. She is also a Clinical Assistant Professor of Dermatology at Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center.