Even royalties aren’t spared from foot diseases such as plantar warts. As humiliating as it may be, Sarah, the Duchess of York, was once quoted as having contracted a verruca or plantar wart after borrowing a shoe from her then sister-in-law Princess Diana of Wales. This was written in Tina Brown’s book, The Diana Chronicles. After the book was released, the princess was so humiliated by what the duchess said that she never spoke to her again. But is verruca really something to be ashamed of?

What is a verruca?

Verrucas are more commonly known as plantar warts. This is a type of wart is found on plantar surfaces.

Is it contagious?

Yes, plantar warts are highly contagious. Warts, in general, release thousands of viruses that a close skin-to-skin contact by an infected person with an unaffected one can pass on the virus. It can also be transmitted indirectly through shared objects such as towels and shoes, or coming in contact with contaminated surfaces such as floors and swimming pool surfaces.

Consult a podiatrist for any signs of a foot problem. Dr. Paul Klein is a podiatrist who specializes in helping people with foot disorders.

What are some of the signs and symptoms of verruca?

A plantar wart is characterized by signs and symptoms such as:

  1. The skin area is white
  2. Presence of black dot or dots in the center
  3. The wart is not raised from the skin surface
  4. It appears on the sole of your feet
  5. Can be painful

What are some ofthe risk factors of contracting verruca?

People who are most at risk are:

  1. Senior citizens
  2. People who have weak immune systems
  3. People with a number of foot lesions

Treatment of verrucas

In some cases, verrucas are being left alone until they go away. However, the pain is most often unbearable that treatments should be done. The treatment for verrucas will be considered for the following reasons:

  • It is causing pain
  • It interferes with your everyday life
  • You have potential risk factors for developing cancer

There is no single treatments for plantar warts and the treatments do not guarantee that verrucas will never return. However, treatments include the use of:

  • Salicylic acid. There are creams, gels and medicated plasters being sold in pharmacies which contain salicylic acid.
  • Cryotherapy. A liquid nitrogen is being sprayed in the wart to freeze and kill the cell.
  • Duct tape. Place a duct tape over the wart for about six days. Once removed, soak the wart in water and use an emery board to rub rough areas.
  • Surgery. Surgeries are the last option and is only used to remove all traces of warts. Curretage and cautery is the usual surgery being done.
  • Chemical treatments. Chemicals such as formaldehyde, glutaraldehyde and podophyllin are used.

At North Jersey Podiatry located in Wayne N.J., we specialize in helping people with foot disorders. To schedule an appointment call (973) 595-1555.