It can become difficult for you identify a skin growth. You might get confused whether it is a wart or some other infection. In our previous post, we had a healthy discussion on treatments for warts. Today we will be discussing different types of warts, and how they affect your body at different stages or forms. As a usual practice, I always begin my discussion covering every point. So, let us begin with a short overview of warts, and then move on to the core points.
What are Warts?
Warts are the small benign growth of the outermost layer of the skin/. When warts are formed, they dig their roots deep into your skin that causes severe pain and itching as well. Warts are mainly formed due to a virus known as the Human Papillomavirus of HPV. Currently, there are over 100 types of HPV that cause warts, and out of these 100 over 50 handle plantar warts. Here are some common symptoms when you suffer from warts.
Symptoms of warts
- You’ll experience tiny blood vessels growing inside warts and appear like dark sports in the center.
- Apart from feet, face, knees, and hands are commonly affected.
- Warts are formed in clusters, or there might be just single wart.
- The size is about ten millimeters and the area around it would
- You will notice a rough or unusual smooth surface where warts have formed.
- You will suffer from pain while sleeping. People suffering from plantar warts suffer from pain while walking.
As discussed earlier that there are over 100 kinds of Human Papillomavirus that causes warts. So, they vary in their appearance and are determined on the basis of location. Below are some of the most common types of warts that affect different parts of your body. I have discussed their appearance as well, so you might be able to recognize them.
Types of warts
1) Common Warts (Verruca Vulgaris)
These are also known as seed wart, and they mostly affect your hands. You can easily recognize them. Common warts have a rough, cauliflower-like appearance. Apart from the hand they can appear on any part of your body like the knuckles, fingers, and elbows. These warts have a black spot in the middle, which usually tells that a swollen vein is inside the wart. Although you may not feel any discomfort, repeated friction or pressure can cause severe pain.
2) Plantar Warts (Verruca)
Plantar warts are commonly found on the soles, heels or toes of your feet. They appear like hard, thick patch of skin having dark specks. Plantar warts usually grow back into the skin because of your weight that pushes them inside the foot sole. These warts can be very painful, especially during night time and early in the morning when they are full stiff. As soon as your body weight pushes them, they cause severe pain, and sometimes, may even, bleed as well.
3) Flat Warts/Plane Warts (Verruca Plana)
Flat or plane warts are smooth and round. They have a yellowish, skinny or brownish color. Plane or flat warts are also known as juvenile warts as they are common among children. They affect legs, neck, hands and face and usually grow in huge clusters that range from 20 and up to a cluster of 100 at a single place. This can make it difficult for you to get rid of them.
4) Filiform Warts (Verruca Filiformis)
Filiform warts are also known as facial warts or digitate warts. They are small benign growth that appear as an individual wart or sometimes in clusters. If formed as a cluster, it may appear like long threads and flesh colored. They project on the skin surface from under the skin. Filiform warts are found near the eyelids, lips, and armpits. You will feel more irritation and itching sensation during night time that may not let you sleep well. It is advised not to rub or scratch your warts because they may bleed, and spread infection on the surrounding skin.
5) Mosaic Warts
Mosaic warts are a cluster of plantar warts growing in a small area. If they are left untreated, they increase their circumference and make several other clusters. Sometimes, mosaic warts become difficult to treat, and you may need over 10-20 visits to the surgeon for proper treatment. They affect your feet and palms.
6) Periungual warts
Periungual warts are also known as subungual warts, and they are found under the toe or finger nail. Their shape is a bit alleviated and has a cauliflower-like structure. If you are suffering from Periungual warts, you need to get them treated at the earliest possible. Else, they cause severe pain, especially when pressure is exerted on them. Subungual warts are also responsible for damaging your nails, and may also detach them with intense bleeding.
7) Oral Warts
These are abnormally raised bumps and appear on your lips and sometimes on your tongue, gums, and throat and in the oral cavity. They usually form singly, but a cluster may also appear. Just like your normal warts, oral warts have a rough surface that is more red or white. However, they are rarely painful, but can cause discomfort while you are chewing or swallowing food.
8) Genital Warts
As the name reflects, genital warts are found on our genital areas and also known as condylomata, acuminate, anal warts, venereal warts or anogenital warts. This type of wart is sexually transferred and appear like a flesh colored or off white in color, with a grainy cauliflower appearance. In male, the head or length of the penis is mostly affected, while in women it affects the vulva. Sometimes the genital warts may not be visible to the naked eye, and you may be unaware of them. This can spread the infection until you diagnose it.
So, these were eight common types of warts that may affect you at a particular stage in your life. Normally, children and older people whose immune system is weak are mostly affected.
Warts on Hands
Warts formed on your hands are known as Palmer warts, and they may also appear on other parts of your body. Toddler and children of ages 6-10 are at a high risk of palmer warts because they love to play anywhere they want, secondly their immune system isn’t strong enough to fight against the HPV. Older people also have a weak immune system, but due to certain reasons they normally don’t get warts on hands, instead they are more prone to warts on feet. Palmer warts are also the cause of warts on hands, and nails.
Warts on Feet
Warts formed on foot sole, toes or heels are known as plantar warts. They appear as single warts or may form painful and hard clusters. Plantar warts are noncancerous skin growth and caused by viral infection or HPV on the top layer. Most of the times plantar warts growth into your feet, because the body’s weight exerts pressure and pushes them inwards. This also causes severe pain and sometimes bleeding as well.
Warts on Face
As discussed earlier warts on face are also known as filiform warts, and they may require a serious cosmetic surgery. Although Human Papillomavirus is associated with filiform warts, metabolic disorder, weak immune system, pregnancy and nervous breakdowns are other causes of warts on face. They are troublesome and if left untreated, may also affect your lips, eyelids and inside of the throat.
This was a detailed overview of different types of warts and their growth on different body parts. However, the question arises that apart from HPV, are warts contagious as well? I have answered it in detail below:
Are warts contagious?
As you already know that warts are growths on the surface of your skin caused by Human Papillomavirus. But these benign and pesky growth are also contagious. A research study at New York University found that over 69% of the Americans have HPC infection on some part of their body. This indicates that they have been contaminated with this virus through a prostitute who may be his friend, an unknown person, family member or his colleague.
The most common causes of transfer of Human Papillomavirus from one person to another are:
- If you wear the shoes of a person suffering from plantar warts, the virus from his shoes will be instantly transmitted to your skin. The HPV then looks for a cut or wound to invade your body.
- In other cases, using utensils like a pencil, a glass of water, etc. of the affected person may also transfer the virus.
- If you had sex with a woman or a man suffering from genital warts, you are at a high risk of suffering from the same. Similarly kissing with a person suffering from oral warts can also transfer the HPV in your body, thus causing warts.
Possible Treatments for Warts
Usually the common wart benign go away by itself after a few weeks. However, the pain may not let you wait till such a long duration. So you can try out a few home remedies:
- Salicylic Acid: This is a common, yet an effective over-the-counter treatment for warts. This acids helps in dissolving and peeling off the wart gradually as you use it daily. When you apply the acid, scrub your feet with a pumice stone for fast results. However, be sure not to use it in excess as the high acid concentration may damage your healthy skin.
- Duct Tape: This is a traditional method that is effective and proves to be inexpensive as well. You need a duct tape and apply it to your warts, and allow it to remain there for about a week. After a week, peel off the tape with a sudden jerk of the hand and then soak your warts in warm water. Use a pumice stone for scrubbing the dead skin cells and warts.
There are a lot of natural homemade remedies which we discussed in detail in our last post. However, these remedies require a lot of patience, but you can also see a doctor for fast removal of warts, and here is what you can do:
- Cryotherapy: It is also known as liquid nitrogen therapy in which the doctor completely destroys your warts by freezing the skin tissue. This causes to form a blister underneath and around After a few weeks, the dead skin falls off, carrying along warts. You just need a single visit of hardly 30-45 minutes and get things done easily.
- Prescription retinoid: It is also known as vitamin A derivative. Retinoid creams can disrupt your wart tissue growth that ultimately causes them to blister off gradually. Sometimes, the skin around warts becomes susceptible to sunburns during the therapy. So, you need to apply sunscreen or try to stay out of the sun.
- Surgery: A surgery involves an electric need that is used to demolish and cut off the wart tissue. This is a tiny surgery. Sometimes the doctor may use laser surgery in which a high-intensity beam is focused on your warts to burn them. A surgical method is the fastest, yet painful as well.
So, now you know how to get rid of warts easily. For some precautionary measures, you must keep your hands, or the affected area dry all the time so that warts don’t spread more. Moreover, don’t let anyone use your stuff, else he may also become a victim. Finally, take as much care as you can for about a month after the treatment to ensure that warts don’t grow again.
I hope you learned a lot from this comprehensive guide on warts. We have discussed its types, symptoms a few little causes and possible treatments. You can check out our site for more such articles and treatment for warts. Don’t forget to subscribe to our website to get regular updates on warts and skin related issues.