Learn what warts look like
Warts are caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV), which infects the epidermis (the upper layer of skin). Multiple warts can develop on the sole of your foot once it is infected.Multiple warts can appear as distinct warts in different spots, or they can be grouped together in a cluster, which is called a mosaic wart. A large cluster of warts can be very painful and make it uncomfortable to walk or run. It’s also more difficult to treat a larger cluster to eliminate them.
When to See the Doctor for Plantar Warts
Plantar warts can go away on their own without treatment, or you might use an over-the-counter treatment for them found in the drugstore. These treatments use salicylic acid to remove the layers of the wart slowly. Most people don’t see a doctor for treatment until after these self-care tactics have failed.You should see your doctor if the wart changes appearance or color, if it is bleeding, or if you have multiple warts. If you have diabetes, poor sensation in your feet, or a weakened immune system, you should also have the wart seen by a doctor.Your doctor may use a stronger preparation of salicylic acid or use cryotherapy, applying liquid nitrogen to the wart to freeze it off. There are further methods that can be used, including immune therapy, minor surgery, and laser treatment. Another interesting treatment is with HPV vaccine, even though the particular type of HPV that causes plantar warts is not targeted by the vaccine.
A Word From Verywell
If you aren’t sure whether the foot lesion is a plantar wart, it is wise to see your doctor. This common problem can be treated and you’ll be on the road to less pain when walking or standing.