• Raised, round, rough-surfaced growth on the skin
  • Most commonly on the hands
  • Not painful unless located on the bottom of the foot (called plantar warts)
  • Brown dots within the wart (unlike a callus) and a clear boundary with the normal skin

Wart on Hand


Warts are caused by papillomaviruses.

Expected Course

Warts are harmless. Most warts disappear without treatment in 2-3 years. With treatment they resolve in 2-3 months. There are no shortcuts in treating warts.

Home Treatment

Wart-Removing Acids
A common wart-removing acid we use is Mediplast. Cut a patch a little larger than the size of the wart and apply it once per day, enough to cover the entire wart. Sometimes a bandaid or tape needs to be placed over the patch to keep it on.

The acid in the patch will turn the top of the wart into dead skin (it will look white). The acid will work faster if it is covered with adhesive tape or duct tape. Once each day, remove the dead wart material by paring it down with a razor blade. If that is hard for you to do, rub the dead skin off with a file or callus remover instead. The dead wart will be easier to remove if you soak the area first in warm water for 10 minutes. If the cutting causes any pain or minor bleeding, you have cut into living wart tissue. Since you are using an acid, avoid getting any near the eyes or mouth.

Cover the wart. It is important to cover the wart with a piece of adhesive tape or duct tape. Warts deprived of air and sun exposure sometimes die without the need for treatment with acids. Remove the tape once a week and wash the skin. After it has dried thoroughly, reapply the tape. The tape treatment may be needed for 8 weeks.

Contagiousness. Encourage your child not to pick at the wart because this may cause it to spread. If your child chews or sucks the wart, cover the area with a Band-Aid and change it daily. Encourage your child to give up this habit because chewing on warts can cause warts on the lips or face. Warts are not very contagious to other people.

CALL OUR OFFICE During regular hours if

  • Warts develop on the feet, genitals, or face.
  • A wart becomes open and looks infected.
  • New warts develop after 2 weeks of treatment.
  • The warts are still present after 8 weeks of treatment.
  • You have other concerns or questions.