Verrucae are warts that that occur on the feet. They are caused by the human papilloma virus (HPV) and there are many different strains. They may occur as single or multiple growths affecting the feet (and hands). Verrucae are one of the most common infections of the skin.
Verrucae will go on their own once your body’s immune system has recognised the presence of the virus and built up immunity to it. On average verrucae will resolve in 1½ -2 years but for some people they can last for a lot longer than that.
Treatment is recommended if:
This is a amazing technology which uses microwave energy, delivered through a special probe to treat the affected tissue. It works by rapidly raising the tissue temperature and creates precise, localised cell destruction. Heat shock proteins are released which stimulate the body’s immune response aiding the resolution of the verrucae.
It has been shown to have over a 70% sucsess rate which makes it one of the most succsessful Verruca treatments on the market.
Like many treatments for skin lesions, some discomfort may be experienced. Pain levels vary from person to person but most people undergoing Swift liken it to a pain similar to an injection or something hot on the area, lasting 2 - 3 seconds then quickly subsiding.
In some cases the treated area may feel sore but will not prevent you undertaking normal daily activities.
This is dependent on how you respond to treatment. It is usually a course of 3 treatments spaced 3-4 weekly. For some persistent verrucae further treatment may be necessary.
Sweaty feet may predispose you more to a verruca as the skin is softer and the PH (acidity/ alkalinity) level of the surface skin is altered. However, it is not fully understood why some people are more susceptible than others.
The latest research suggests that the HPV that causes verrucae lives on our skin in harmony with other bacteria and virus strains and that a lowering of our immune system with mild illness such as colds; flu; stress or poor diet, can allow the virus to take up residence. This has lead us to understand more easily why they can heal themselves and vanish when the immune system is ready to recognise the virus and destroy it.
The thinking that they may be caught by cross-infection from communal floor areas such as swimming pools and showers has fallen out of favour however; any lesion on the foot such as a blister or cut might increase the chances of infection as they provide an easier entry point for the virus.
People often worry about passing verrucae onto other members of their family but it is very unlikely, as previously explained HPV is everywhere and you are most likely to catch them because of a dip in your immune system rather than sharing showers or because the sufferer has walked around barefoot.
Brightwell Clinic does not recommend treatment under 11 years of age. Verrucae Pedis virus will resolve of its own accord when the body’s own immunity is ready to deal with it.
To find out more about Verrucae and treatment alternatives click here to read our blog post.