Q What are Verrucae?
A Verrucae are commonly called warts. They can occur on any part of the body, but we are concerned with those which occur on the feet or toes. The correct name for this type of wart is Verrucae Pedis.
Q What causes Verrucae?
A These warts are very common and are considered to be due to a virus infection. These infections occur generally at swimming pools, communal showers, at leisure centres and of course schools. Anywhere in fact where people share the same floor surface and walk around in bare feet. It only needs a little scratch on the skin for the virus to enter. However, some people never get them, as they have a resistance to them.
Q What do they look like?
A. They vary in appearance due to whether you have a dry skin or a moist skin. With moist skins they appear often as rubbery overgrowths, on dry skins they may appear brownish, rough and crumbly. Frequently they are covered with hard skin, and may have black pinpoints, which are actually blood vessels, not the ‘seeds’ of the verrucae.
Q. Where do they occur?
A. Anywhere on the foot. Frequently on the toes, heels, soles of the foot and sometimes between the toes. They can also appear on your fingers. They can vary in size from a tiny spot to multiple cells. If untreated they can swell upto an inch in circumference and spread, developing into clusters called mosaic warts.
Q. Do Verrucae hurt?
A. Frequently they do. Pain is often felt first thing in the morning when stepping down from the bed. This is because during the night you have rested and the blood supply is not under any pressure due to standing, and of course, pain is felt upon pressure. A simple way of testing whether it is a verrucae is to squeeze the sides. If it hurts more when you do this, it is invariably a verrucae. However, many verrucae are completely painless.
Q. Do only children get Verrucae?
A. It is true to say that verrucae commonly occur mainly in children and young adults. However, they do occur in more mature people, and this is especially happening now with more adults attending leisure centres and playing more sport.
Q. How are Verrucae treated?
A. It is true to say that many verrucae disappear of their own volition. This is because the person develops a resistance to the virus infection and fights it off. However, some do not, and they need help. A qualified Foot Health Practitioner will use either a special ointment or liquid, which will need to be applied at regular intervals of between five and seven days. It is vital that you return to the Practitioner, because these ointments are caustic and destroy the verrucae by gentle destruction. You will always be told by your Practitioner not to get the dressing wet, because there is an acid in the ointment, and this could spread onto healthy tissue, which will become irritated.
Q. How can you reduce the risk of getting Verrucae?
A. Avoid direct contact with Verrucae, this includes your own Verrucae.
Keep your feet clean and dry, changing your socks daily.
Don’t go barefoot in public areas, always wear shoes or sandals in public pools and locker rooms.
Don’t pick at Verrucae, picking can spread the virus to your hands.
For more details: http://cherquefarmfootclinic.webs.com/