You feel a rough area on the bottom of you foot, you don't remember having a rough spot there. You look at the bottom of your foot and find a thick area of skin and it looks like there are little black dots in the middle of the area. If this is the scenario you are in, you probably have a wart. The best thing to do is to make an appointment with your podiatrist and check it out to see all of your options.
Sometimes it is hard to just look at a lesion and determine it a wart. In some cases, the skin on top of the wart is so thick that it is too difficult to see the wart tissue. In this case, the doctor will gently shave off the callus skin(this does not hurt as the skin is dead and usually pretty thick).
After the skin is shaved off, the doctor will usually see multiple small pinpoint areas of bleeding tissue in a wart. After determining if the area is a wart, the doctor will give you options for treatment. In a perfect world, the doctor would numb the area and cut it out and send it to pathology to know beyond a shadow of a doubt that the area is indeed a wart. This is something we do in the office daily. However, many patients can not be off their foot for 2 to 3 weeks. See after a wart is cut out and sutures(stitches) are placed on the bottom of the foot, the patient should not put any weight on that part of their foot and they can not get it wet for the 2 to 3 week duration. Our soccer players, swimmers, runners and every other sport you could name can not take 2 to 3 weeks off during the height of their seasons. And then adults with jobs or children to take care of can not afford to be off the area that long either.
We have options for people who can't be non-weightbearing for their wart. Every day we see patients that we perform a simple in office procedure that does not require the person to be non-weightbearing. But before we do this we explain to the patient that this will require them to perform some home care as well. We also let the patient know that they may need to see the foot doctor for anywhere from 2 to 5 times before the wart is completey gone. These visits are spaced out in one month increments.
During your visit, the doctor will shave the dead tissue then apply a topical prescription medicine on the area of the pinpoint bleeding. This is a very strong medicine that is not available over the counter. You will be instructed to use a topical wart acid and duct tape on the area nightly until you see the doctor the next visit.
Yes we tell our patients to wait about 2 to 3 days after we have done the in office procedure to start their homework. We tell patients that their homework is nightly. They are to apply a thin layer of Compound W to the wart tissue then apply a small piece of duct tape over that. The next morning when they wake up they are to remove the duct tape and go on with their day. We instruct them to not apply another layer of Compound W and duct tape until night time. This is repeated nightly until they see the foot doctor about a month after their last visit.