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I am always being asked about Verruca, what it is, what does it look like, how it is caught and of course how it can be avoided.

Verruca (AKA Plantar Verruca or Plantar Warts)


Appear mainly on the bottom of the feet


Human Papiloma Virus, it’s a viral infection

So how do we identify a Verruca?

Resembles a lumpy bump on the skin, often surrounded with thickend skin (callous)

So are they dangerous?

The answer to that question is quite simply ‘no’.

Do they hurt?

Generally not, however much depends on the site and positioning of the Verruca which can be aggravating, if in a weight bearing position, or pinched by footwear.

Are they contagious?

Yes.Verruca love warm moist skin, in fact they thrive in these conditions and are very contagious and easily spread in such environments. One blessing is, that as we get older the skin isn’t quite so warm, or quite so moist and as a result the Verruca are no long attracted to the skin. However, as the defences are down and as we work ever harder with longer hours, it is more difficult to fight a virus that has the upper hand.

What is the best way to treat Verruca?

At Aubrey Podiatry we use salicylic acid, as well as a self caer plan given by the podiatrist for you to do at home.

What about home treatments?

In my view over the counter treatments without consulting a podiatrist is not recommended.

Firstly, do not remove the surrounding tissues as the amount of vascular tissue is vast, and the blood will be immense.

Removing it yourself can also build up the surrounding scar tissue, which then acts to insulate the Verruca and make it harder to get rid of!

Secondly, for someone who has self diagnosed a Verruca, how do you actually know it is a verucca and not a corn or another type of growth. If you suspect you have a Verruca, always get it checked by a professional Podiatrist, as who is to say that you are not looking at something far more sinister? Don’t forget that Plantar Tumours are one of the fastest growing skin cancers and awareness is very important.

The morale of the story…

This is all about professional diagnosis, get a thorough examination and understand and discuss the best treatment for you, with your Podiatrist. Where it is positioned on the foot can have an implication of the best way to treat it with the least pain as well as providing beneficial advice on how to prevent them coming back.

Some helpful tips for someone that has a verucca.


  • wash your hands after touching a wart or verruca

  • change your socks daily if you have a verruca

  • cover warts and verrucas with a plaster when swimming

  • take care not to cut a wart when shaving


  • share towels, flannels, socks or shoes if you have a wart or verruca

  • bite your nails or suck fingers with warts on

  • walk barefoot in public places with a verruca

  • scratch or pick a wart

If you have any further questions or think that you might have a verucca please give Aubrey Podiatry a call (03) 688 9095.

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