M.C. asks from Carpentersville, IL on February 11, 2008
How Do You Know When a Wart Is Gone?
My son was diagnosed with a wart on the side of his foot right before Christmas and had it 'frozen off' (very painfully) at the doctor's office. The doc instructed us to follow up a few days later by soaking it, scraping off the dead skin with a callous remover, and then applying Compound-W strips or OTC liquid salicylic acid and duct tape every 1-2 days until it's gone. The strips didn't seem to work very well... we went through a whole box of them. So, now we've switched over to the liquid wart remover (the one that stinks really bad when you paint it on the wart). Anyway, the liquid stuff (DuoFilm) creates a film layer as it dries on the skin. So, then when we scrape it off every night, we're not sure if we're scraping dead skin, the wart, or the dried medicine from the night before. Doing this stuff everyday has become a royal PIA (thankfully my son is very patient with it--he wasn't in the beginning). Anyway, how do we know when the wart is truly gone so we can stop this part of our nightly routine? It was never dark or discolored at the beginning or through this whole removal process. It has always looked white, like a blister, even from the beginning. Now, it's just more flush with his foot in terms of size.
EDIT: Thanks for the advice so far about keeping surfaces and clothes clean to prevent spreading it and the tips on how to care for it. I know what we're doing is working because it has definitely shrunk... and may even be gone. But that's my question: how do I know when it's gone?
J.P. answers from Chicago on February 11, 2008
Honestly I would do it for as long as he will tolerate it. I had a huge issue with warts and they do come back a lot of the time. They are viral and a PIA as you mentioned. Maybe do it every other day for a little while longer. After you stop watch for signs of it returning and if it doesn't great and if it does start the process over. Also watch becasue they can spread, so make sure you and your son always wash your hand thoroughly when your done with the "procedure." Last thing you want is warts on the hands/nail bed those are super hard to get rid of. Here is an article I found.
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L.M. answers from Chicago on February 12, 2008
warts are caused by a virus that lives in your system once you have it, so more can come back. I have heard of remedies treating it rather than the chemicals. I had one frozen off by the skin doc and then my finger got so infected it had to be lanced and took forever to heal. It was very painful. Something in the peel of a banana makes them go away. So does putting about a teaspoon of Apple Cider Vinegar in a little bit of water and gulping that down quickly. it was strange, mine went away almost completely after dabbing a bit of Apple cider vinegar (the kind w/the "mother" in it-brand name Bragg's, not the filtered heinz kind) on it, and covering w/a band aid for a while. then it went completely away this fall after a itchy skin rash I had that was systemic. Very strange buggers they are!
D.P. answers from Chicago on February 14, 2008
My advice would be to wait a few days and take a look at it. Be careful because any scraping can actually cause the wart to spread. It is a virus. Some people have problems with warts (like me) and some people (like my husband) will get them and they will go away on their own. The only way to tell if it's really gone is if there is no raised portion or especially any (tiny) black spot and the skin all looks like the surrounding skin. Freezing will cause an added blister and that takes a little while to heal back to normal too. You have to stop using the acid for a few days to really be able to tell. Also, if it hasn't gone away, I would recommend seeing a podiatrist and not just a regular pediatrician. Freezing has never worked for me and over-the-counter stuff for SURE has never worked for me. Good luck!
C.D. answers from Springfield on February 11, 2008
I hate to say it but I had a LOT of experience with warts during my pregnancy. It went from 1 during the first trimester to about 10 on one foot and 3 on the other, which all disappeared after I delivered my daughter.
Be very diligent about washing socks, keeping the wart off of family surfaces (floors) and washing hands, they spread quickly.
Ask for a refferal to a podiatrist they will give you a prescription treatment to apply to the wart.
Also keep scraping the dead skin off because a callous will form over the wart.
K. answers from Chicago on February 12, 2008
Warts are so stubborn! I used the finger nail clippers to clip off the dead skin when I was getting rid of my last one a few years ago. Once you start bleeding, you know you've gotten below the wart. Esp. in feet, you usually have to dig a bit. I found that using those OTC freeze things worked pretty well, but you had to be aggressive with it. We did freeze-thaw cycles (Freeze 30 sec, thaw 30 sec, repeat 3x) and then a few days later scrape off the dead skin. Repeat until the wart is REALLY gone (ie bleeds when you scrape and hurts like normal skin if you try and freeze). Maybe this is more than you can expect from a 5-year old though... Just keep at it!
F.P. answers from Chicago on February 25, 2008
My 5 yr. old had/has a wart on his hand. He had/has the thing for like 6 months. Like you I tried all that over the counter stuff, none of it worked and he refused to let me file it. So I made an appointment with a dermatologist and of course 2 days after I made the appt. it fell off (my appt. wasn't for 2 wks.) so I kept it and figured I would have her look at it to make sure it's healing like it should. Well to my surprise she told me it wasn't completely gone, so she gave me a prescription for it and told me to put it on and do the filing also, well he refuses to let me put it on or file and it hasn't change, actually I haven't looked at it recently, but if it was growing he would tell me. Anyway I would make an appt. with a dermatogilst just to have them look at it and they can tell you exactly what to do if anything, most likely it's still there from the way you described it, so they will probably give you a prescrpit.(something stronger that will work quicker and better) since your child is so coperative I would definately follow through and you will probably have a follow up visit to make sure it's gone if they don't tell you to, I would make one anyway. I hope this helps.