Warts are viral growths that can be formed anywhere on the skin, but their most common sites are hands, plantae, face and neck. It is proved that the cause of their appearance is HPV, human papillomavirus, which has more than 100 species, many of which contribute to the malignization of growths. Therefore we cannot trifle with the appearance of any growths on our body, be sure to consult a dermatologist to determine the exact diagnosis, the type and nature of the growth, and to differentiate it from other skin damages. In this article you will learn how to get rid of warts on hands, how to treat and remove these growths on the skin.
How Hand Warts are Transmitted and Why They Appear?
Why do warts on hands and fingers appear? What are the causes of them, how are they transmitted? Almost 20% of adolescents and children at least once had contact with warts among their environment and 10% of them face this disease at different ages. Infection with different types of papillomavirus is very easy given the presence of micro traumas on the skin:
- directly through direct contact of the affected skin with the healthy one;
- and by household way – through clothing, personal hygiene products, household items etc.
Hand and plantar warts are caused by the following HPV types: 1-5, 49, 57, 19-24, 26 -29, 1, 12, 10, 14, 15, 17, 19. The incubation period of those virus types is 2-6 months. However, even in case of infection with the papillomavirus, a strong and healthy body easily stop its proliferation and progression, so the main cause of appearance of warts on the skin of children and adults is reduction of the body defenses – malnutrition, prolonged stress, hormonal disorders, fatigue, negative external effects such as radiation, chemical emissions of industrial cities, bad food and other factors.
The virus is transmitted most rapidly in areas with warm and humid air, therefore saunas, swimming pools, spas, sports, and gyms are the most frequent sites of infection transmission.
The most popular localization of warts on hand is obvious, since the maximum contact at work, games, at home, and outdoors is made specifically through the hands. And the children’s desire to scratch or tear warts contribute to the spread of the virus to other parts of skin, and the habit of nail biting can also contribute to penetration of infection under the nails. Without treatment, warts under nails and on the fingers proliferate, reproduce, merge and damage the nail.
What happens after the infection? HPV viral agents penetrate into the bloodstream through scratches, injuries and micro cracks on the skin. The DNA of the virus in the human genome results in abnormal cell proliferation process. This is accompanied with the increase in blood flow to the site of virus infection, promoting rapid growth of these cells. Sometimes this process is very rapid when the wart appears within 1-2 weeks, and sometimes it is delayed for several months, so people not always immediately notice the wart appearance.
How to Determine – Is It a Wart or Not?
There are several types of warts on hands – common warts, vulgar warts and flat warts on hands.
Common or vulgar warts
Most often, they appear on the fingers, palms, back of the hands, very rarely they are formed in the mucous membranes and face. It is the most common type of Verruca vulgaris, they cause up to 70% of all skin growths. They look like dense, rounded nodules of 0.3 to 1 cm in diameter, of different colors, in some cases they have the same color as the skin, and sometimes they can be pinker, yellowish, darker or light brown. By touch they are not smooth, not plain, but rough. Typically, development of the virus is manifested by multiple growths, when there is the largest parent wart and many smaller warts around. If you remove the parent wart, the rest can disappear by themselves.
Flat warts or plane warts
They appear only in 4% of cases and mostly affect the face, mucous membranes and the skin of the hands and fingers. Most often young people of 10-30 suffer from them. The warts are usually small, not exceeding 3 mm, have a smooth surface, rounded shape, yellowish or skin color.
To determine whether it is a wart or other skin issues, such as moles, you should consult a dermatologist.
Pictures of Warts on Hands
Why Warts Are to Be Removed?
In case of hpv warts on hands appearance do not neglect it, since it indicates an existing failure in the human immune system. By themselves, these growths in most cases are not dangerous, not painful, but even if they do not bother you and do not cause discomfort, you should get rid of the warts, as:
- Even one wart on hand increases the risk of sudden occurrence of the others in non-infected areas of your skin.
- Accidental injury of the growth can contribute to a secondary infection on the skin or exacerbate the spread of HPV.
- The presence of growths puts other people at risk of infection, especially family members, close friends, at work, at school, and in kindergarten.
- Although it is believed that common warts are not oncogenic, there is always the risk of malignancy of any growths.
In clinical practice there are cases of self-regression of warts, when warts on fingers and hands disappeared spontaneously without treatment and without a trace. It is believed that during 3 years, 75% of warts will disappear for some internal reason, within 2 years they will do in 66% of cases, and within six months in 30% of cases.
However, if you do not notice the growth regression, any method of removing it does not guarantee full recovery due to the viral nature of warts. If the internal reserves of your body do not give a decent immune response, even after the removal warts tend to be formed again and again and to recur in other areas of the skin.
You definitely need to remove warts, if:
- The wart changes color, becomes uneven, gets wet or bleeds.
- Multiple small warts appear around the parent wart.
- The wart is on the site where it is constantly exposed to friction, pressure, risk of strain, as well as if it severely bothers a person, or being visible causes psychological and aesthetic discomfort.
How to get rid of hand warts
Today there are numerous methods of treatment for warts on hands. All solutions can be divided into the following groups:
- Surgical treatment – curettage of tissues of the growth under local anesthesia, this method is rarely used today.
- Physical therapy – hand wart removal with laser, liquid nitrogen, or electric coagulation.
- Chemical – with acids, alkalis.
- Immune therapy.
- Folk remedies – celandine juice, onion, acetic acid, and so on.
Treatment with any non prescription drugs may be unsafe, especially without finding the accurate diagnosis. What dermatologists offer today to remove warts on hands and fingers?
Laser wart removal is quite an effective method of getting rid of warts, very fast and almost unpainful. In terms of cosmetic effect today it is considered the best removal option as the procedure leaves almost no scars, the doctor can easily control the intensity of exposure, recovery from the procedure is fast, and the removed growths can be examined histologically.
Cryotherapy or warts removal with liquid nitrogen is a quite painful procedure in some cases, but with a good assessment of the depth of exposure leaves no scars. However, in some cases it requires repeated treatments, and its downside is soreness after the procedure for 1-2 days and formation of a blister, which should be wiped with a strong solution of potassium permanganate during one week.
Electrocoagulation method is used to treat warts on fingers and palms with high-frequency current. It is a bloodless method, but it is used for small warts without deep roots, so, for example, plantar warts cannot be removed through this method.
Chemical agents used to remove warts should be used very carefully, because they can cause burns of nearby healthy tissues, it is best if the procedure will be performed by a doctor. To avoid damage to the skin, you should apply fat cream to the surrounding skin surface or close up the skin with plaster after cutting in it a hole for warts of the same diameter as the growth.
Before using any of the folk remedies or ready care products it is necessary for 5-10 minutes to steam the wart, then wipe the skin dry and make the application of a solution.
Salicylic acid requires long treatment – 1-3 weeks, other drugs sometimes require only one-time procedure or repeating it in 2 weeks.
Among the popular treatments for warts on fingers, nails and hands, the most effective is cauterization of warts with natural celandine juice that you can obtain by yourself during flowering of the herb from May to June.
Or use the following method – clean an onion, cut, pour with 70% vinegar essence for 2 hours, then apply and secure a slice of the onion to the affected area overnight and remove in the morning and repeat the procedure until the complete disappearance of the growth. Instead of onions you can use flour, mix vinegar and flour to form gruel and put it on the growth overnight.