Warts: causes, types, symptoms, diagnosis, treatment

Warts are benign (unlike malignant - without the formation of cancer cells) skin formation, which is formed under the influence of various representatives of the human papillomavirus (HPV) family, of which there are more than a hundred. There are no gender and age barriers for warts: their prevalence is the same between both sexes and does not depend on age.

Infection forms and causes of warts

common wart on the skin

The papillomavirus is transmitted by contact: either by direct contact with the carrier (handshake), or through contaminated household items and the environment (in baths, showers, swimming pools, etc. ). But do not run away from a hand extended by a colleague or good friend: the condition for infection is an unfavorable combination of several factors:

  • cracks and microtraumas on the skin, chronic scratching. Risk group - people who, due to the nature of their professional activities, perform wet cleaning or hand washing: they have many microtraumas on the skin;
  • weak immunity (indicator - frequent colds);
  • excessive sweating of hands and feet.

If everything went wrong, the first wart will appear in 1. 5-6 months: this is the incubation period for a viral infection caused by HPV.

Types and symptoms of warts

Common warts (also called vulgaris)

These warts represent 2/3 of the total number of warts on the skin. It's the same thing, these warts are characterized by age legibility: they usually settle in children and younger students.

A favorite place for warts to dislodge are the hands (both the palms and the back), fingers, sometimes (which is very unpleasant from an aesthetic point of view) the face. The appearance of a common wart is very unpretentious: a round seal nodule, ranging in size from a pinhead to a small pea. The color does not stand out on the skin. Single warts are rare: there are usually several or a whole scattering. In addition, one of the warts is the largest, it is called the maternal wart. If you eliminate it, the rest will fall of its own accord.

Flat warts (juvenile)

flat warts on the face

Another representative of "young" warts that affect people from 10 to 25 years old. These are small flat papules that stick out only slightly on the surface of the skin, having a smooth (sometimes scaly) surface. The color is flesh, sometimes with a yellowish tinge. Most of the time, flat warts are found on the back of the hands, wrists, face and neck. Sometimes - on the head of the penis.

plantar warts

plantar wart

These warts are distinguished by increased pain, which is especially felt when walking. Externally, plantar warts are difficult to distinguish from corns. They can be convex or concave. Plantar warts appear in line with their name - on the soles, in the places of greatest friction.

Senile (seborrheic) warts

senile warts

A benign epithelial tumor formed over the years that occurs in old age is called a senile wart. Initially, it is a small brown spot, which, increasing over time, reaches a diameter of 5 to 6 cm. A senile wart (also called seborrheic keratoma) has a greasy, crusty surface. Over time, it thickens, its surface becomes covered in cracks and literally fills up with a dark brown color. Senile warts form in closed areas of the body, but they sometimes bother their unconscious owner on the face, neck, and limbs.

Condylomas (genital warts)

These warts have a specific location: genitals, perineum, vaginal opening and anus. They can occur in the armpits, under the female breast, and in children - in the nasolabial folds. In appearance, they are often compared to cockscomb or cauliflower due to their lobulated structure. The color of the warts is flesh-colored or pale pink, but if you rub them, they turn red and start to bleed. They form large colonies.

wart diagnosis

Diagnosing warts is not difficult, this is not rocket technology for you. Just look at the clinical manifestations of these unwanted growths. Plantar warts are distinguished from banal calluses by the papillary structure of the former, genital warts from broad warts, which are a sign of secondary syphilis, by the denser consistency, wider base and moist surface of the latter.

wart treatment

Warts are removed medically or mechanically. Given their viral "essence", they are fought accordingly: antiviral ointments are prescribed. This will prevent the spread of warts to areas that have not yet developed. From folk methods, the milky juice of celandine, which excels in cutting the plant, became widespread.

Electrocoagulation (exposure to electric current + high temperature) helps to eliminate warts even in the most advanced cases.

Cryotherapy (cryodestruction with liquid nitrogen) is very suitable for the treatment of common warts. This procedure is virtually painless, which makes it convenient to use on children.

Plantar warts are treated in a complex way: first - by cryodestruction, then - surgically, excising the affected tissue area under local anesthesia.

Laser therapy is also used, using different types of beams. The affected area depends on it to evaporate or clot.

There are usually no special problems with warts, but relapses do occur. And in about half of the cases, they go away on their own, without any treatment.

As a preventative measure, you may be advised to respond promptly to the appearance of a wart and immediately take steps to eliminate it.