How to Manage Your Verruca

Verrucas – so they are everywhere apparently! We see lots and lots of a verrucas every day here in clinic, everyone’s always asking me, how can I get rid of my verrucas? They are a bit of a pain to be honest. And I’m sure, if you’ve had one, you will know this. The reason that they are a bit annoying is that they’re a virus. So it’s not just something like a corn on the foot where you can come in, we’ll take it out, and that’s it gone. Because it’s a virus, that’s a systemic thing going on in your body. All treatments are aimed at trying to get your body to recognize the virus and fight it. And once it does that, it picks up on it and fights the virus, they will go.

Okay, so they present as little thickened areas on the bottom of your feet. And they’re usually flat on the bottom of your feet, because we walk on them. So it’s sort of pushed up into the bottom of the foot in there, because you’re walking on it all day. They can be painful, they can get quite big and they can spread. So there’s lots of things you can do about this. One thing to note is they’re not harmful. So if they’re not bothering you, you can just leave them and the theory is that your body will pick up on the virus and fight it at some point. It may take weeks, months, maybe even years, but it should pick it up at some point, and they will go. If however you want to get rid of them sooner or they’re painful, then there are things you can do.

So you can try lots of over the counter treatments from the chemist. These tend to work better on younger kids because their immune systems are better at fighting the virus anyway. However, if you’ve tried it and it’s not worked, then you can come into clinic and we can offer you different options. So we mostly would offer two things. One is cryotherapy, two is needling. So when we see you, we would assess your verruca and discuss the options with you, and if you’re happy to have a treatment with us here, we could either go with cryotherapy, which is effectively freezing the verruca. And we usually do that minimum of three times at three sessions. It can be quite nippy, but it’s very fast, so it doesn’t take long and your foot might be a little bit tender for a day or two after but you don’t need any dressings, anything like that. So that’s one option. The second option is needling, and that is more of a one off treatment. We put some anaesthetic in the foot and we basically cut out as much of the verruca as possible and then we puncture it hundreds of times with a needle. It’s more aggressive than cryotherapy and the theory is that you’re physically getting it as much as you can and by puncturing it, you’re getting the virus into the bloodstream, so your body will pick it up and fight it. Both have got good evidence that they’re about 70% effective. You will not find a treatment for verrucas that’s any more effective than 70-75% because it relies on your body fighting the virus.

If you’re interested in coming in and to have a chat about treatments or you want to book in with us, it’s the usual number or 01372 464659 or email us at info at [email protected]. All right bye for now.


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