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Warts & all – Part 2

Woman washing hands with antiseptic disinfectant. Beautiful drop of liquid antiseptic falling to the hand palm

Written By

Shaheen Aumeer-Donovan
Philip Aumeer-Donovan

See bottom of page for author information

Posted 1st July 2023

As featured in the Mulgoa Valley District Gazette

Please see our June editorial for Part 1 of our discussion on wart treatments!*

2. Wart paints

Once a wart has been diagnosed, you can commence home treatments with wart paints (available from the chemist). These work by burning the warty tissue with acid to provoke the immune response. It is important to follow the instructions (they normally require daily applications), and mask the area around the lesion with Vaseline, nail polish, or sports tape to avoid burning healthy skin. A podiatrist should monitor the progress every 1-2 weeks to ensure no issues are occurring. This can be a good option for stand-alone lesions, but it can be difficult to treat mosaic warts without burning the healthy skin around the virus.

3. Cryotherapy & acid treatments

In clinic, we can provide either cryotherapy or acid treatments. Cryotherapy works by applying a chemical that freezes the lesion to produce an immune response, while acid treatments work similarly to wart paints but we can use stronger chemicals. These are usually done weekly, with home treatments using wart paints done in between.

4. SWIFT

SWIFT is the current gold standard for wart treatment. It uses microwave technology to provoke the body’s immune system. The treatment itself can be uncomfortable – it is sometimes described like a rubber band snap or a hot sensation, although it doesn’t actually burn the skin – but treatment is only required monthly with no at-home treatment in between, and many of the lesions resolve within 1-2 treatments. We have had great success with long-standing and extensive warty tissue with SWIFT treatment. These may require a lot more treatments to completely resolve, but we often find that pain relief is achieved after 1-2 treatments. Success with this method is around 85%, which is a lot higher than other methods, likely because it penetrates deeper and doesn’t require ongoing daily treatment that can be a difficult commitment to maintain.

5. Curettage

Curettage is when the lesion is cut out of the foot. This can be an option for stand-alone lesions but it comes with the general risks of surgery and there is a high risk of scar tissue forming that can cause new issues. It is also not guaranteed that all the wart will be killed (since it is a virus), or that re-infection won’t occur. We highly recommend that patience and persistence with less invasive treatments (which may take a longer time) is a better option in most cases.

* For general information only – a healthcare professional must be seen for tailored advice

If you have any questions, please give us a call, email us, or send us a message – we’ll be happy to chat with you to discuss your needs.

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Authors

Shaheen Aumeer-Donovan

Shaheen is our Practice Manager. She works hard behind the scenes to ensure that the clinics run smoothly, best practices are being followed, and the staff have everything they need to look after the Repairs Afoot family. While a stickler for the paperwork, she’s also a little quirky and loves using her creativity to find new ways to encourage people to look after their feet.

Philip Aumeer-Donovan

Philip is our esteemed Clinical Manager and resident foot-whisperer. He has over 21 years of experience as a podiatrist and has been mentoring new graduates in the profession for over 12 years. He hasn’t met a sore foot he didn’t want to treat, which is why he has strived to build a clinic that can help patients with any kind of foot issue, and is committed to continuing education to ensure he is up-to-date with any new developments that could be beneficial for his patients. It is also why he is believes strongly in sharing his knowledge with the wider community.