Warts - Causes
The most common types of warts include:
- Common hand warts
- Foot warts
- Flat warts
- Genital warts
Common hand warts grow around the nails, on the fingers, and on the backs of hands. They appear most often where the skin is broken.
Foot warts are also called plantar warts. Plantar warts usually occur on the ball of the foot, the heel and the bottom of the toes. The skin in these areas is subject to weight, pressure, and irritation and has a tendency to crack or break open, providing an opening for the virus. Foot warts usually do not stick up above the skin.
People of all age groups can get plantar warts. But they are most common among adolescents between the ages of twelve and sixteen. The virus can be picked up in locker rooms, swimming pools, or by walking barefooted on dirty surfaces. People with diabetes mellitus (see diabetes mellitus entry) are very likely to develop plantar warts. The warts develop in areas where sores did not heal properly.
Flat warts are smaller and smoother than other kinds of warts and tend to grow in large numbers. Although they can appear anywhere on the body, flat warts appear most often on the legs of women and the faces of children and young adult males.
- The use of liquid nitrogen for the purpose of removing diseased tissue.
- Human papilloma virus (HPV):
- A family of viruses that cause hand, foot, flat, and genital warts.
Genital warts are a type of sexually transmitted disease (STD). A sexually transmitted disease (see sexually transmitted diseases entry) is a condition that is passed from one person to another during sexual activity. The forms of HPV that cause genital warts are very contagious. A person who has sexual contact with someone
infected with HPV is very likely to contract the disease. Experts estimate that two-thirds of these people will develop genital warts within three months of contact. As a result, about one million new cases of genital warts are diagnosed each year in the United States.