FAQ about Warts

What is a wart?

A wart is a growth of skin cells appearing most commonly on the hands or feet. Often, it looks like a flesh colored tumor.

What causes warts?

A virus is what causes warts. The most common virus that causes the development of warts is the human papilloma virus (HPV). Once the virus is in the skin it will cause the excessive growth which becomes a warts.

What do warts look like?

Warts are raised growths on the skin that often are the normal color of a person’s skin although discoloration is a possibility. Often, warts will have a strange cauliflowered look to them which adds to their less than desirable appearance.

How does the HPV virus get into the skin?

The HPV virus will get into the skin through a cut or tear in the skin. Generally, the virus cannot breach unbroken skin but if there is a tear – even a microtear — the virus will find its way inside the body. Once it is there, the virus will then begin to effect the skin and cause the formation of the unwanted warts.

Are warts harmful?

No, warts are benign skin growths. Those that do see warts appearing on their skin without warning might end up being frightened as they might assume the warts are not warts at all but, instead, are cancerous tumors. Those with serious concerns may wish to see their doctor to determine whether or not the growth is a wart or if it is something else.

Are warts contagious?

Yes, warts are contagious. This is due to the fact they are spread by a virus. However, HPV is not as contagious as some other viruses. We know this because many people come in contact with the virus on a daily basis and do not end up with warts. That said, many people do develop warts when infected.

Warts can also spread to other parts of the body if picked or scratched. This is why such behavior is not recommended.

How long after an infection can you expect the wart to develop?

The amount of time it takes for a wart to manifest is frequently far longer than most people realize. A wart can appear within two months but it can potentially take upwards of 9 months after initial contact with the HPV virus has occurred.

What exactly are warts comprised of?

The answer might be somewhat surprising since it is does not reflect anything out of the ordinary. Essentially, warts are comprised of skin. Specifically, warts are skin cells that have grown out of control and over top one another after having been infected by the HPV virus.

Can a wart go away on its own?

The good news to this question is yes. The bad news, however, is that it might take a very long time for the wart to actually go away. The wart might fade away on its own in a few months. That would be the best possible outcome. More than likely, it could take years – yes, years — for the wart to go away. This is why so many will look to have the wart removed.

Are there different types of warts?

Yes, there are several different types of warts a person could contract. The most common wart is named, appropriately enough, a common wart. This is the cauliflower type wart you will see on hands, feet, knees, and elbows. Plantar warts on the painful warts found on the bottom of the feet. Flat warts are small and smooth and can come in many differnt colors. Filiform warts can grow on the facial region. Genital warts are found in the pubic region, the thighs and even the vagina or anus.

Are there over the counter treatments which can effectively get rid of warts?

Yes, there are topical solutions which can eliminate the presence of warts. This will not happen, however, in a rapid manner. Usually, a liquid solution will need to be applied to the wart on a daily basis for several weeks. This will wear down the wart tissue and eventually lead to the wart going away.

Can stubborn warts be medically treated?

For those suffering from stubborn warts that will not go away when over the counter topical solutions are applied, there are medical treatments which can be used. These treatments can range from surgery to burning to freezing to even laser removal. Consult with your doctor about which method would be the right one for you.

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