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Warts are benign skin growths caused by a certain group of viruses known as human papillomaviruses (HPV). Warts are most common on the hands, feet and face. It can also occur in the genital and anal region. It is more common especially in children and adolescents. Although generally harmless, they are aesthetically disturbing and sometimes cause complaints such as pain, itching or redness. These HPV-induced swellings have been seen even in 3000-year-old mummies and are very old formations.


warts; It can be defined as benign or benign lesions that occur on the skin and skin. These lesions, called HPV and caused by viruses, are divided into many subtypes. The spread of warts is through direct or indirect contact. In cases where the epithelial barriers known as the upper layer of the skin are damaged, wart development may be easier.

Although there are various difficulties encountered in the treatment of warts, such lesions generally tend to regress within a few years. Some types of HPV infection, which has more than a hundred subtypes, are quite dangerous. These; There is a predisposition due to the development of cancer in diseases with subtypes numbered 6, 18, 31, 35. Conversion to malignant formations is generally detected in individuals with warts on the genital area and immunodeficiency.


Symptoms of warts; may vary depending on the type of wart. In addition, the skin and the raised condition that occurs on the skin are among the most important findings of warts. These bumps can be brown or skin-colored. However, they come in different sizes. Warts on the soles of the feet; It may not be in a puffy state due to pressure. However, it is possible to give symptoms in the form of painful stiffness. What are the symptoms of warts?

The symptoms of genital warts, which is one of the most common types of warts, are; It's pretty faint at first. However, it gives symptoms in the form of a small or a few pieces of fluffy meat. In addition, it is generally not noticed or ignored by the patient. However, it starts to multiply in a short time and becomes noticeable for the patient.

However, in general, genital warts in women occur in the vagina, vulva and breech region. In women who do not care about their examination and treatment, warts sometimes cover the entire genital area. Sometimes cauliflower-shaped structures called large genital condylomas form. There is bleeding in these structures. But today, people who are conscious are treated without experiencing such things.


Warts, which can be seen widely throughout the world, are a disease that affects approximately 1 in 10 of the human population. Its incidence is 2 times higher in school-age children. Wart development is more common in people who deal with meat, such as butchers, or who have immunodeficiency. When the distribution of the disease between the sexes is examined, it is seen that men and women are equally affected by the disease. These hard and non-cancerous bumps occur on the surface of the skin, and contact with the infected skin area is the main factor in the spread of the disease to other people.

Warts caused by viruses are highly contagious. The viruses that cause these warts can be transmitted directly from person to person, and sometimes indirectly through objects such as towels or razors. For this reason, close contact with people with warts and joint use of personal items should be avoided. For example, it easily spreads to other individuals by wearing slippers belonging to the person with warts on the sole of the foot. Although wart formation is not always observed in a healthy individual who comes into contact with this region of an individual with warts, it is quite possible to contract the HPV virus. Each individual's immune response to this virus is unique, and this individual immune response determines whether warts will form or not. Genital warts with some HPV types are transmitted by sexual contact.

There is a period of four weeks to eight months between the introduction of the virus into the body and the appearance of the wart. If there is a wound on the skin, it becomes easier to become infected with wart viruses. At the same time, if the skin is moist or wet, it increases the risk of infection. For this reason, it is often transmitted in environments such as swimming pools, saunas and Turkish baths. It may not always be possible to prevent wart transmission, which occurs in quite a variety of ways, but keeping the hands clean regularly, cleaning the wound after any area of ​​​​the skin is damaged, and avoiding contact with other people's warts are among the basic measures that can be taken to prevent the ways of interpersonal transmission. At the same time, a person who has warts anywhere on his body can spread it to other parts of his body. In order to prevent this situation, various precautions can be taken such as not scratching the wart lesions, keeping them dry, avoiding the contact of the blade with the wart during shaving, or using the objects to be used on the skin surface differently for the warty area and the unaffected area.


Warts are often observed on the fingers, hands, soles of the feet and genitals. Warts are caused by a virus that enters the body. It can take two to six months for a wart to develop after your body has been exposed to the virus.

Typical Symptoms of Warts;

  • Observation as small, fleshy tubers

  • Available in tan, white, pink colors

  • Have small, clotted blood vessels


Warts mostly threaten children, young people, the elderly, people with organ transplants and people with low immune system against the virus such as HIV (AIDS).

The diagnosis of warts is not difficult for doctors under normal conditions. Usually, the diagnosis can only be made by examining the wart. In most cases of warts, the shape, structure and location of the lesion provide information about whether it is a wart or what type of wart it is. However, if the doctor is not completely sure of the diagnosis, he may request a tissue sample from the skin lesions to be examined in the laboratory. In some cases, tests to detect the causative virus in the sample may also be performed.

Structural proteins of HPV virus can be detected by immunohistochemical methods. The distinction of which type of HPV is can be made by examining the DNA, which is the hereditary material of the virus, especially the PCR (polymerase chain reaction) method.


Warts come in a variety of sizes, shapes, and colors, depending on their type and where they appear.

Verruca Vulgaris (Simple Warts)
These warts are round, coarse-textured, and yellowish or brown. They are usually found on the hands, around the legs and nails.

Verruca Plantaris (Sole Warts)
They are buried deep in the feet and cause pain. They are likely to be confused with calluses, the presence of black or red dots inside the wart should be checked to distinguish them. Depending on the weight, the warts on the soles of the feet may develop inward.

Verruca Plana (Flat Warts)
These warts are small and smooth in clusters of numerous warts on the face, hands, and legs. They can occur anywhere on the body, especially on the face, hair and hands.

Verruca acuminata, Condyloma acuminatum (Genital Warts)
Such warts occur in the genital areas and are usually transmitted by sexual contact.

Increasing in number over time, these viruses form a cluster of warts in a cauliflower-like structure. These warts, which threaten both men and women, are contagious and rapidly spreading.

Therefore, the number of warts, which is one or two at the beginning, will reach much higher numbers in a short time. For this reason, while the problem can be overcome with a very short-term treatment, a more difficult and longer treatment may be required with the proliferation of warts.

At the same time, this may cause aesthetic and functional problems. While some types of the virus can cause cervical cancer in women, cancer can develop on warts that cannot be treated for a long time in men.


The treatment of warts should be approached depending on factors such as the patient's age, the extent and duration of the lesions, the patient's immune status, and the patient's desire for treatment. In some patients, the treatment may take a short time, while in some patients, repeated and long-term treatments may be required.

Cryotherapy (Liquid nitrogen)

Cryotherapy is probably the most common method used to treat warts. The wart is frozen with liquid nitrogen at -196°C. The main disadvantage of freezing is pain. In some cases, especially in which long freezing times are applied, it may be severe and may last for a few hours or even a few days.


It can be applied on scalp, face, neck, knee, elbow and mouth lesions. Local anesthesia is required. Creams are used for local anesthesia in children.


Warts (especially large warts in the anogenital area that do not respond to topical treatments and a small number of warts on hairless skin) can be curetted or surgically excised.

Chemical agents

A wide variety of topical keratolytic agents can be applied, often in conjunction with cryotherapy. Mainly salicylic acid can be used in creams, gels, paints, ointments and 40-60% plasters and special gel patches in concentrations between 10-40%. In addition, some antimitotic agents such as podophylline can also be used.

Cutaneous viral warts are only temporary discomfort for most children, as most cases resolve spontaneously within 1-2 years. Flat warts have the highest rate of spontaneous remission among all clinical HPV infections.

The lowest-risk HPV types are HPV-6 and HPV-11, while HPV-16 and HPV-18 are the most common causes of HPV-related genital dysplasia. Condom use provides partial protection from genital HPV infection.


Should warts be treated?

At very young ages, warts can heal spontaneously over time without treatment. However, painful and rapidly growing warts, especially in the genital area, need to be treated.

How long does wart treatment take?

Each session of wart treatment can take between 5 and 20 minutes on average, depending on the width of the lesions. The full cure may vary depending on the patient's immune system and the structure of the wart and its depth. Sometimes a single session is sufficient, in some cases 4-5 sessions may be needed. The interval between sessions is 3-4 weeks on average.

Is wart dangerous?

It is very rare for the wart to go away on its own in adults. Warts seen in children may regress spontaneously within 1 year. When the disease is diagnosed, the best thing to do is to treat it. Cancer is very rare in skin warts. Especially the types that settle on the mucous membranes (in the mouth, genital and anal region) pose a risk for the formation of cancer. However, if the person is in an age group of 50 years or older and has warts or warts that grow and bleed rapidly, he should definitely consult a dermatologist.

Genital wart is a sexually transmitted infection caused by HPV. While about 40 types of HPV virus, which has more than 150 different types, cause genital warts, 15 types are associated with cervical cancer in women. It is now known that genital warts, which were previously thought to have little effect on men, cause cancer in men, albeit rarely.

How can warts be prevented?

The risk of wart contamination can be reduced by:

  • Support the body's immune system; do not smoke, eat a balanced diet, exercise regularly in the fresh air.

  • Carefully dry the spaces between the fingers and toes after bathing.

  • Regularly apply moisturizing lotion to dry skin, especially hands.

  • Breaking off pieces of skin around the nail results in small wounds where viruses can easily penetrate the skin. Avoid doing this.

  • Wear slippers in swimming pools, sports facilities, saunas and hotel rooms.

  • Do not share towels with family members who have warts

  • Wash towels and clothing that come into direct contact with the wart at a temperature of at least 60 degrees.

What Should Be Considered After Wart Treatment?

After wart treatment; It depends on the treatment of the wart. However, it is very important to keep the treated area hygienic. What should be considered after wart treatment? It is necessary for the warts not to collect water after the treatment, in order for the treatment to respond quickly.

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