A verruca is a skin infection commonly on the feet or hands and is caused by a virus. Also sometimes called a plantar wart, they are caused by the human papilloma virus. The virus causes your skin to produce excess keratin, a hard protein that helps build your skin, nails and hair.
Sometimes people will confuse a wart from a ‘corn’ but they are two very different things, with different causes and treatments. It’s important to get the right diagnosis and treatment – a Podiatrist is very used to dealing with both corns and verrucas every day and can easily distinguish between the two and explain how, as well as what to do to treat it.
A verruca is caused by a virus, whereas a corn is build up of hard skin due to excess pressure on an area of skin – from friction in shoes on top of your toes, or maybe in the middle of your forefoot from pinched skin, due to a collapsed transverse arch. So corns can be traced back to constant friction from an outside force, such as tight shoes, or a biomechanical problem in your feet such as collapsed arches or retracted toes. Therefore – you can catch a verruca; you can’t ‘catch’ a corn. (Your Podiatrist can safely and painlessly remove a corn, identify what caused it, and how to help stop it from coming back, from footwear choices to protective toe sleeves or custom orthotics).
Verrucas sometimes go away on their own. However, if it spreading, becoming painful or causing you embarrassment, you can have it treated.
It’s important to note that because a verruca is caused by a virus, no virus of any sort can be killed by any medicine. What any verruca treatment tends to do is harm the verruca site, to trigger your body’s immune system into recognizing the virus and attacking it. Podiatrists can also safely reduce the hard skin over the site to make it less painful to walk on, but this doesn’t remove the virus and the hard skin will build up again if left untreated.
Sometimes, your Podiatrist may recommend a short course of specific, targeted Vitamin therapy prior to and during verruca treatment, which can aid the body’s healing process and address any vitamin deficiency that can contribute to the body’s reduced immune response.
Dubai Podiatry Centre recommends the latest in verruca therapy – Dermojet. This is a needle-less device that looks like a steel pen, which discharges a range of medicines depending on what it is being used to treat. It is sometimes, for example, used by Doctors to administer vaccines virtually pain free and quickly.
Dermojet can also be used to specifically target specialized areas such as small verrucas on the feet and has been adapted for use by Dermatologists in treating a range of skin conditions. It only takes a few seconds, is sterile and has proven highly effective in the fight against verrucas, with generally only one follow up visit required to either deliver a ‘top up’ treatment or to check that the verruca is gone and discharge the patient.