What are Warts?
Warts are benign small raised bumps caused by the human papilloma virus infecting the top layer of skin. It is more common in children and adolescents. Warts caused by viruses are extremely contagious. They are transmitted through direct contact with the wart or shared items such as slippers, towels, phones, razors that come in contact with the wart.
Do warts cause pain?
They usually don’t cause pain. Though rare, they may sometimes cause pain, itching or rashes.
Why do warts occur?
Warts are contagious infections caused by human papilloma viruses, shortly called HPV. However, the cause of dome-shaped warts is not HPV, but another virus called molluscum contagiosum. The cause of seborrheic warts is not a virus. These are not actually warts and are also called seborrheic keratosis. They are not contagious.
How can we avoid warts?
First of all, it is necessary to avoid close contact with people who have warts and the shared use of personal belongings. If your relatives have warts, you should avoid using shared items with them. In addition, it is easily transmitted in environments such as swimming pools, saunas and Turkish baths. A person with a wart anywhere on his body can spread it to other parts of his body. If there are scars or cuts on the skin, it becomes easier to get infected with warts viruses. At the same time, moist or wet skin increases the risk of contamination.
What are the types of warts?
Depending on the type of virus causing the infection and the area of its location, morphologically different types of warts occur. There are more than 100 types of HPV that cause warts.
· It is the most common type of wart. It can be found all over the body.
· It often settles on the fingers, around the nails and on the back of the hand.
· It is more common in people who have the habit of nail eating.
· It appears in the form of skin bumps in skin color, with a rough surface and sometimes with black dots. It does not cause pain or itching.
It is a special form of Verruca vulgaris type of warts. It has a long body that looks like thread. It tends to appear mostly in the elderly, on the face (eyelids, lips and nose) or neck. It may be itchy. This type of warts, which is quite annoying in terms of cosmetics, can be irritated during washing, drying or shaving.
They appear on the sole of the foot. They are painful. They are generally transmitted in common use areas such as swimming pools, Turkish baths and gyms.
Although their appearance resembles warts, they are not actually warts and are not caused by human HPV viruses. They mostly settle in the body in groups. Whereas it is located in the trunk, face, neck or armpits in children, it is more common in the genital areas in adults.
It is not known exactly why seborrheic warts occur. They are not caused by viruses and not contagious. They are mostly seen in the elderly and are also called seborrheic keratosis. They occur on face, chest, back, back of the hand, arms and legs. Their appearance may differ.
How are warts treated?
The treatment of warts is planned according to the age of the patient, the location of the wart, its thickness and clinical type. Wart treatments should be carried out by physicians. There are different methods and solutions for treatment. In the treatment, prescriptions containing salicylic acid solution, cryotherapy (freezing method), laser treatment or surgical processes are frequently applied. Usually, HPV virus is eliminated after treatment and the wart does not recur. However, if the immune system is weak, there is a possibility of recurrence.
Salicylic acid solution
Salicylic acid solutions are used by applying them to the wart several times a day for several weeks. Some forms also contain lactic acid.
During the application, the doctor usually immerses a cotton swab in liquid nitrogen and applies it to the wart pressing on it for a few seconds. Liquid nitrogen is very cold and destroys cells in the upper skin. Cryotherapy treatment is repeated until the wart completely disappears.
Wart treatment with laser
Laser is the most appropriate treatment option for warts in hard-to-treat areas and that are resistant to treatment. The laser light destroys the vessels on the wart ground by heating it and disrupts the aliment of the wart. Warts become purplish brown. Latest within a month, the top scab peels off and healthy skin appears. Re-session may be required in large and thick areas of application. In laser treatment, viruses that cause warts are eliminated by means of heat.
In some cases, warts are treated by surgical removal. After the area is numbed with local anesthesia, the wart is removed by cutting with the help of a heated scalpel.