- Form: exophytic growing nodular lesions
- Size: pin-sized
- Appearance: grey, sometimes with dark dots inside representing blood vessels
- Typical localization: hands, finger and soles
- Form: out standing, sometimes pendular warts with multiple small ridges (filiform)
- Size: rather small, commonly less than 2 mm in diameter
- Appearance: skin colored, sometimes dark red or even black when it has been bleeding
- Typical localization: around eyes, mouth or neck
- Form: round and flat, usually when multiple warts are grouped in an area
- Size: multiple pin-sized warts in a group
- Appearance: white, light coloured
- Typical localization: can be found on all sites but most commonly on soles
- Form: flat or elevated
- Size: tend to grow deep
- Appearance: hyperkeratotic plaque with a rough surface
- Typical localization: palmes and soles
Genital warts (condylomas)
- Form: round nodules, sometimes resembling moles
- Size: typically up to 3-4mm in size
- Appearance: skin colored or darker
- Typical localization: mainly around the genital area, perianal (rectoscopy recommended if found perianal)
Water Warts (Molluscum contagiosum)
- Form: round nodules with a central dent
- Size: typically up to 3-4mm in size
- Appearance: skin colored
- Typical localization: can be found on any site. If transfected sexually, on and around genital area
Water warts (molluscum contagiosum) are transfected by viral infection as any other warts. However, the virus type is different. While all other warts are caused by human papiloma virus (HPV), water warts are caused by a pox virus. The mode of transmission is the same as of HPV: viruses are spread by contact, directly or indirectly, i.e. even without direct contact to a wart or infected person. Therefore, thorough disinfection particularly of the hands are helpful to avoid infection.
Individual treatment in Vienna
Treatment removes existing warts and prevent spread of the warts on other parts and infection of unaffected people.
The following treatment options are commonly used:
They are based on salicylic- or lactic acid and dissolve the corneal part of the wart so that eventually, warts fall of with the help of mechanical tractation. As the wart becomes softer, it is also easier to treat with a file or slicer. If treated successfully, the scar is removed within 3 to 4 weeks without leaving a scar.
Cryotherapy using liquid nitrogen
Icing with liquid nitrogen leads to blistering. This effect is used to lift up the wart from the skin. This treatment is often repeated several times until the wart eventually falls off. Liquid nitrogen is effective on areas where the skin is not so thick such as soles and palms.
Under lokal anaesthesia, the scar can be burnt away. This method is very effective, however, it will leave an ulcer., and expect scaring after the treatment. This method is recommended on areas that are not delicate or visible, and when other methods have not been successful.
Laser (not offered in the office)
CO2- or dye-laser can also be used to remove warts. Hygienic measures such as wearing masks are required to prevent from infections caused by the pulverization of the warts. While smaller and flat lesions can be removed, laser is not as efficient for removing larger or deep warts.
Despite various treatment options, sometimes, treatment must be repeated as there is an estimated recurrence rate of 30%.
Prof. Dr. Okamoto is a board certified dermatologist in Vienna, Austria. For appointments, please phone +43 1 40114/5701 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org or fill out the contact form
Tipps to avoid warts von Prof. Dr. Okamoto
- Use flip flops or sandals in public pools. Using alcoholic desinfectants helps avoiding transmission
- Do not share towels, sponges, flannels, creams etc. with others.
- For condylomas, the risk can be reduced using condoms. However, condylomas are not limited on the covered area and the virus can be spread also by body fluid.