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When Wart Removal Is a Good Idea

Plantar warts are common, and folk remedies about how to get rid of them are sometimes funny. Perform a ritual including a potato at midnight at a crossroads? You’ll probably be performing the ritual over and over when the warts come back. 

Instead of practicing dubious home remedies when you have a plantar wart, visit a highly qualified podiatrist like Dr. Svetlana Malinsky for a treatment plan that works. Warts aren’t generally dangerous, but they can be painful and stubborn. 

Most people have a plantar wart and some point or other in their life. The warts are caused by a virus, and they often go away without any kind of treatment. But, sometimes, warts can be stubborn and require removal for you to truly be rid of them. Here’s more about warts and when it’s a good idea to see a podiatrist about removal.

How you get a plantar wart

Have you ever wondered about the difference between a plantar wart and other warts? It’s simple: A plantar wart is on your foot. All warts are caused by viruses, and they can all be painful. 

Because plantar warts are on your feet — which bear your weight, have shoes rubbing on them, and otherwise see a good deal of use — those warts may be more irritated and painful than warts in other locations. 

The virus that causes warts thrives in moist, warm environments, so locker rooms and pool decks are perfect for them. If you walk barefoot in an area where the virus resides, it can get through tiny cuts or abrasions on your feet that you may not even realize you have. 

Walking barefoot is the most common way people get plantar warts, but once you have them, there are lots of ways for them to spread. The wart may bleed, and they can spread when you scratch or even touch them.

Treatment for warts

Most people begin by using over-the-counter products to get rid of warts or simply waiting for the virus to run its course and for the wart to go away — which can take a year or more. 

It’s a good idea to seek wart removal treatment if your wart is painful or your home efforts haven’t worked. You also should make an appointment if you notice your wart may be spreading.

Pharmaceutical treatments

Dr. Malinsky may recommend a prescription topical medication first. Usually, this is a cream or other topical treatment that contains salicylic acid or some other type of acid, sometimes called an acid peel. If that doesn’t work, she may suggest immune therapy — drugs that boost your immune system to fight the virus causing the wart. 


Cryotherapy means freezing the wart off. Usually, this is accomplished with liquid nitrogen. Dr. Malinsky numbs the area first, because cryotherapy can be painful. You may need multiple sessions before the wart is gone. 

Laser treatment

In this treatment, a laser is used to cut off the blood supply to the wart, and it eventually falls off. You may need several laser treatments before it’s successful. 

Minor surgery 

Dr. Malinsky also may recommend surgical removal of your wart. She numbs the area first so that you’re not uncomfortable. This is usually an option of last resort because it can cause scarring. 

If you have a plantar wart that’s painful, that won’t go away, or that seems to be spreading, schedule an appointment with Dr. Malinsky. The office is conveniently located in College Park, Maryland, and you can call us or use our handy online booking tool.

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