#9 What Causes Warts? 10 Most Common Questions Asked of a Foot Doctor

Causes of Warts on the Foot




Plantar warts causes and symptoms

Plantar Warts: Cause

Warts are caused by a virus. It  often enters the skin through a break caused by athletes foot, running, blisters, cracks and sweaty feet. Hotel rooms, gym classes, wrestling, pools are all commonly infected areas- virtually anywhere a barefoot person with warts would walk!. Different strains of warts appear anywhere in the body you have skin. Warts on the bottom of the foot  "plantar warts". Plantar just means the bottom of the foot. Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) is the virus that causes warts.https://www.bvfootclinic.com/foot-care-and-treatment-gallery/

Protective sandals can be helpful in prevention as the HPV (Wart Virus) is spread by direct contact and likes a moist environment to live. Pregnant women, children and teenagers are more susceptible to warts than adults.

 picture of plantars wart on the foot

picture of plantars wart on the foot

Identifying Warts

  • skin lines go around lesion
  • may have pinpoint capillary bleeding
  • are often painful when they get larger
  • more pain to side to side pressure, than direct pressure
  • can have "wart babies" surrounding the larger "mother wart"
  • "kissing warts" form on adjoining toes!

What causes plantar warts on bottom of feet?


How are plantar warts caused? Plantar warts are caused by a virus.  

How do you get rid of plantar warts?

  1. Remove warts by cutting them out.
  2. Laser destruction of plantar warts is the most pain free way to kill them.
  3. Special strong acid found only in a Podiatrist office can help get rid of warts.

Tips for Prevention


  • Keep your feet clean and dry.
  • Do not go barefoot in hotel rooms, gyms, locker rooms, or pools, 
  • Wear slippers or sandals in public areas.
  • Don't touch or pick at your warts.
  • Check children's feet regularly.

Self Treatment

Malignant melanoma or other dangerous conditions can look like warts to the untrained eye, so don't treat these at home! Many OTC wart medicines can damage surrounding skin, thus allowing the wart to more easily spread to other areas of your foot. calluses mistakenly treated as warts can easily become infected by acids causing cracks in your skin, allowing bacteria in.

Office Treatment

There are many different ways to treat warts in the office. Our Podiatrist will evaluate them and choose a treatment with you based on such things as:

  • How many warts are there?
  • How big are the warts?
  • How long have the warts been there?
  • What sports do you play?
  • What does your job entail?
  • How good is your immune system (diabetic, autoimmune disease, anti- rejection medications? blood supply, and age to name a few factors your podiatrist will consider.

All of this goes on instantly in your doctors mind with out you even realizing it!

Treatment Options

  1. Trim excess dead wart tissue prior to treatment to be more effective. 
  2. Salicylic acid
  3. Cantharidic acid (beetle juice!)
  4. Novocaine and excision
  5. Laser destruction of plantar warts.