Advanced Dermatology & Laser Center of Redlands
 
 

Redlands Office

255 Terracina Blvd., Suite 206
Redlands, CA 92373
Phone: 909-792-8600
Fax: 909-792-8660


 

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Our Dermatologist can help Resolve HPV / Warts

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What causes warts?

Warts are a type of virus infection caused by the human papilloma virus (HPV) family. There are more than 100 types of HPV viruses, but the most common ones encountered are types 1-4, 6, 7, and 10. Warts can grow on all parts of your body, but the predilection is for the fingers, extremities, face and genitalia. Common types of HPV tend to cause warts on the skin (such as the hands and fingers), while other HPV types tend to cause warts on the genitals and rectal area. Some people are more naturally resistant to the HPV viruses and while other people are more susceptible.
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Can warts be contagious?

Yes, warts on the skin may be passed to another person when that person touches the warts. It is also possible to get warts from using towels or other fomites that were used by a person who has warts. Warts on the genitals are very contagious and can be passed to another person during oral, vaginal or anal sex. In women, warts can grow on the cervix (inside the vagina) without their knowledge and serve as a source of the HPV virus for the men who have sex with them.
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Will warts go away on their own?

Often warts disappear on their own, although it may take many months or even years and meanwhile, you may pass them on to others in the family or your friends. Moreover, some warts won't go away on their own. Doctors are not sure why some warts disappear and others do not.
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Do warts on the skin need to be treated?

Generally, yes. Common warts are often bothersome. They can bleed and cause pain when they're bumped. Plantar warts grow on the soles of the feet and produce pain like stepping on nails. Facial warts can also be embarrassing. Treatment may decrease the chance that the warts will be spread to other areas of your body or to other people.
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How are common warts on the skin removed

First of all, it's important to know that warts on the various areas of the are removed in different ways. Don't try any home remedies or over-the-counter drugs to remove warts on the genital area. You could hurt your genital area by putting certain chemicals on it. The following are some ways to remove common warts from the skin:

  • Salicylic acid: You can treat warts on places such as the hands, feet or knees by putting salicylic acid (one brand name: Compound W) on the warts. To get good results, you must apply the acid every day for many weeks. The acid sinks in deeper and works better when it is applied to damp skin. Before you take a shower or a bath the next day, use an emery board or pumice stone to file away the dead surface of the warts.
  • Cantharidin: Your doctor may use cantharidin on your warts in the office by painting the chemical onto the wart. You'll experience some pain and blistering of the wart in about 5 hours. After treatment with cantharidin, a bandage is put over the wart. The bandage can be removed after 24 hours. Upon follow-up, your doctor will remove the dead skin of the wart. If the wart isn't gone after one treatment, your doctor may suggest another treatment.
  • Liquid nitrogen: Your doctor may use liquid nitrogen to freeze the wart. This treatment is called cryotherapy. Applying liquid nitrogen to the wart causes a sharp pain. Following therapy, the wart may become swollen and turns black and may fall off. To completely remove a wart, liquid nitrogen treatments may be needed every 1 to 3 weeks for a total of 2 to 4 times. If no improvement is noted, your doctor may recommend another type of treatment.
  • Laser therapy: Your doctor may also remove warts on the skin by burning it with a laser. These treatments are stronger, but they may leave a scar. On the other hand, laser treatment is perhaps the only wart treatment that is effective against the plantar warts of the feet.

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How are warts in the genital area treated?

  • Aldara: Aldara is an immune-modulator which activates your immune system to fight against certain skin conditions including genital warts. It comes in small sachets which are rather expensive. Small amounts are applied every other night and washed off in the morning. Irritation and redness with pain may be experienced at the treatment site. Recently, another imiquimod is marketed under the brand name of Veregen, in a 15 gram tube.
  • Laser therapy: Your doctor may also remove warts on the skin by burning it with a laser. These treatments are stronger, but they may leave a scar. On the other hand, laser treatment is perhaps the only wart treatment that is effective against the plantar warts of the feet and genital warts unresponsive to Aldara treatment.

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Do warts ever come back?

Most of the time, treatment of warts on the skin is successful and the warts are gone for good. Your body's immune system can usually get rid of any tiny bits of wart left after treatment. Genital warts are more likely to come back because there's no cure for the virus that causes them and because warts are more difficult to control in a moist environment. Warts on the thick skin of the palms and soles also tend to recur after therapy.
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Redlands Office
Advanced Dermatology & Laser Center of Redlands
255 Terracina Blvd., Suite 206
Redlands, CA 92373
Phone: 909-792-8600
Fax: 909-792-8660


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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Board-certified dermatologist, Fred F. Soeprono, M.D., serves cosmetic, medical, and laser dermatology needs of the Inland Empire including Redlands, Ontario, Fontana, Highland, Yucaipa, Moreno Valley, Riverside, Rialto, Colton, San Bernardino, Riverside, and surrounding areas.