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What are warts?

Warts are small, harmless lumps of skin caused by a virus known as the human papillomavirus (HPV). A wart will usually have a flesh coloured appearance and the skin forming the wart will be rough. Warts are common in school-aged children but can happen at any age.

What are the symptoms of warts?

The appearance of a wart depends on its type. There are several different types of warts:

  • Common warts (verruca vulgaris) — these are small, raised areas of skin, usually round, with a rough surface of skin often looking like the top of a cauliflower. These warts often appear on the hands, elbows and knees.

  • Plane or flat warts — these are flat warts that are usually yellow in colour and appear on the hands and face. They are most common in children and can often spread and group together.

  • Plantar warts — these are warts that appear on the feet, usually on the sole, heel or toes. The weight of the body causes the wart to be pushed into the skin so a plantar wart will usually not be raised like other warts and may even cause some discomfort when walking. You may notice a white area of skin with a tiny black dot or dots in the centre.

  • Filiform warts — these are long, thin warts that usually appear on the eyelids, armpits or neck.

  • Mosaic warts — these grow in clusters and are most common on the hands and feet.

  • Subungual or periungual warts — these are warts that form under or around the cuticle.

  • Mucosal warts — these can appear on the lips, inside the cheeks and nose, the airway and in genital areas.

Different Types of Warts

What causes warts?

You can get the HPV virus from direct contact with the skin from another person who has the virus or indirectly through contaminated surfaces such as swimming pools or gymnasiums. HPV infects the cells in the outer layer of the skin, causing them to grow and form a wart. It can take up to a year for the wart to appear for the first time.

Genital warts are caused by a different family type of HPV. These are sexually transmitted and can cause cervical and vulval cancer. Ordinary skin warts do not cause cancer.

When should I see my doctor?

Most warts will go away without treatment in time. In children, without treatment, half of all warts disappear within 6 months and almost all (9 in 10) will go away within 2 years. It can take longer in adults.

It is a good idea to show the wart to your doctor if:

  • the wart is bothering you or painful

  • you have warts of the face, feet or genitals

  • the wart looks infected (red, swollen and warm)

  • you have multiple warts or the warts are spreading

  • you have reduced immunity

  • you are pregnant or planning a pregnancy

How are warts treated?

Warts can drop off by themselves over time.

If you decide to have a warts removed — for example, because it is bothering you or you don’t like its appearance — talk to your doctor or our doctor in the clinic.

In our clinic we have a special machine (Radio Wave Surgery - ellman Surgitron) that can remove your warts.

  • Minimal to no scarring

  • Precise incisions

  • Faster recovery

  • Is this treatment right for me?
    The Potenza RF microneedling treatment can treat a wide variety of skin concerns on the face and body. Potenza treats all skin types, anywhere on the body, anytime of year.
  • How long does the treatment take?
    Treatment times will vary on patient, area of the body being treated, penetration depth and number of passes, but most Potenza treatments are performed within 1 hour.
  • When will I see results?
    The elastin and collagen building typically takes place 4-6 weeks after treatment, with optimal results usually seen at 12 weeks after the last treatment. The number of passes and penetration to the skin will affect the results seen.
  • What is the benefit of microneedling treatments that use RF energy?
    Potenza delivers focused radiofrequency (RF) technology to heat your skin. Using RF technology will trigger your body's natural response to create an increased level of collagen and elastin production, resulting in an enhanced skin revitalisation treatment versus microneedling alone.
  • How does it work?
    The Potenza microneedling treatment uses ultrafine needles and radiofrequency (RF) energy to puncture the top layer of the skin and trigger the body's natural healing process to regenerate new collagen and elastin. Unlike some other skin revitalisation treatments, these treatments can be performed on all skin types, anywhere on the body and anytime of the year.
  • What is Tiger Tip technology?
    Potenza’s Tiger Tip needles eliminate the clinician’s need to essentially re-trace their steps, by providing them with the technology to perform both shallow and deep treatments at the same time, and tailor those treatments to individual skin types – meaning faster, more customized treatments.
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