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Plantar Wart Treatment


At North Sydney Podiatry, we often see patients present with plantar warts (verruca pedis).

Plantar warts are harmless growths that typically occur on the soles of the feet but can also be present on the hands. The infection appears when the skin cells begin to multiply rapidly, causing a circular spot of thickened, hard skin with tiny black dots (clotted blood vessels). Plantar warts are often confused with corns or bunions as they can look similar, however, treatment is different, so it is important to see a podiatrist right away for an assessment.

Unlike common warts which can be treated with over-the-counter treatments, plantar warts on the feet are more difficult to treat. This is due to the wart tissue growing inwards as a result of pressure on the area from standing and walking.

Our specialist podiatry team knows the most effective ways to treat warts and has years of experience with plantar wart removal.

If you’re dealing with painful warts or are embarrassed by these unsightly skin lesions, we can help.  

Causes of Plantar Warts


Plantar warts are a viral infection of the skin caused by the human papilloma virus (HPV). There are over 100 varieties of the HPV virus that cause different types of warts on different areas of the body.

HPV can be transmitted through skin-to-skin contact, but direct contact with a person who has the virus is not necessary to catch HPV. Simply touching a surface that a person with HPV has touched can spread the virus.

Common areas where the virus spreads are wet areas such as public swimming pools or bathrooms when people don't wear footwear.



Most patients who visit us for plantar wart treatments experience discomfort from their warts and find it painful if pressure is applied to the area. Activities such as walking or standing on the affected foot cause pain.

While some warts may disappear on their own as their body's immune system triggers an immune response to fight the virus, we have patients come to us with particularly stubborn plantar warts that have been causing them foot pain for years. Stubborn plantar warts can be experienced by patients who have a weakened immune system.

On the other hand, some warts may only cause mild discomfort depending on where they are on the foot. Patients who don't experience pain from their warts often see us for treatment options as they find them unsightly and embarrassing.

How Can a Podiatrist Help?


Some plantar warts are resistant to treatment and may require multiple treatments. The good news is that effective plantar wart treatment over multiple sessions can permanently remove the wart.

At North Sydney Podiatry we find that the most effective form of treatment for wart tissue on the foot is salicylic acid. Salicylic acid can also be used for the treatment of flat warts on other areas of the skin.

While other plantar wart removal Sydney podiatrists use wart removal treatments such as swift microwave therapy, liquid nitrogen, silver nitrate and laser treatment, our patients have a high success rate with salicylic acid and we find it to be the least invasive and most comfortable.

Treatment using salicylic acid involves pairing down the skin's surface where the wart is present, applying the acid to the skin (only the wart itself), and then re-checking in 2 weeks with possible repeat treatments required.

What to Bring to My Appointment

It isn't necessary to bring anything with you if you are visiting us for plantar wart treatment.

One of our experienced podiatrists will perform an assessment prior to discussing a recommended treatment. Usually, it only takes a visual exam to diagnose plantar warts so it is not invasive or painful at all.

Once you have decided you are happy with the treatment, your podiatrist can come up with a treatment plan to get you started right away toward being pain-free.

Don’t Ignore Your Plantar Warts


It is important to see a podiatrist as soon as you see a plantar wart form on your foot. If left untreated, multiple warts can develop in the surrounding healthy tissue causing additional pain and making them more difficult to treat.

A scratched or picked wart can spread infection, resulting in warts on other areas of the body.

While some warts may resolve on their own, it's also important to seek wart treatment to avoid passing human papillomavirus on to another person.

At North Sydney Podiatry, we offer effective treatment for plantar warts to rid you of those unsightly growths and get you back to living a pain-free, full life. ​

Contact North Sydney Podiatry today to book an appointment with one of our experienced podiatrists for an assessment by calling (02) 9954 3445 or filling out our booking form.

Frequently Asked Questions


Can a Podiatrist Remove a Plantar Wart?

Yes, a podiatrist can remove a plantar wart. Complete removal is possible, however most may require more than one treatment to be fully removed.

Does Plantar Wart Treatment Hurt?

Plantar wart treatment can hurt depending on which treatment you undertake. Our experienced team will do their best to minimise discomfort.

How Long Does Plantar Wart Removal Take?

How long plantar wart removal takes depends on how long you have had your wart and how resistant your wart is to treatment. Salicylic acid removal may remove most warts under 3 months of treatment when combined with at-home application of an ointment in between treatments and dressings required to prevent the warts from spreading. While it is not the most swift wart removal option, it is less invasive than other treatments.


Are the Results of Plantar Wart Removal Permanent?

Yes, plantar wart removal is permanent. It's important to remember, however, that HPV, the virus that causes the warts to appear on the skin, cannot be cured. So you may have new warts pop up throughout your lifetime, meaning that future wart treatments may be required.

Are Plantar Warts Contagious?

Yes, plantar warts are contagious, but the risk of transmission is low. If your skin is cut, broken or you walk barefoot in wet public areas, it can increase your risk of transmission. Seeking swift wart removal is the best way to avoid passing on the warts virus.

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