Warts Specialist

Gerald Austin, DPM

Podiatrist & Foot and Ankle Surgeon located in San Jose, CA

If warts prevent you from exercising or participating in other routine activities, don’t wait to seek treatment. At his practice in San Jose, California, experienced podiatrist Gerald D. Austin, DPM, treats plantar warts in people of all ages using safe, non-invasive means. To make an appointment, call the office to speak with a member of the administrative team, or click the online booking tool.

Warts Q&A

What are warts?

Warts are small, flesh-colored bumps that tend to develop on weight-bearing areas like the heels or balls of your feet. They’re caused by a strain of the human papillomavirus and are highly contagious. 

Anyone can develop plantar warts, but they’re especially common in young children and teens. Experts aren’t entirely sure why, but it’s probably because their immune systems are still developing. 

Most warts resolve on their own over time, but if yours cause pain or interfere with your daily routine, it’s important to visit Dr. Austin as soon as possible. 

What are the symptoms of warts?

Common symptoms of warts include:

  • Pain or tenderness when walking or standing
  • A hard, flesh-colored bump
  • Small growths with a black spot or “seed” in the middle
  • Rough patches of skin

If you have diabetes or another health problem that affects your circulation, you might also experience signs of an infection like redness, increased sensitivity, and warmth.

How can I prevent warts?

There’s no way to prevent warts entirely, but there are steps you can take to lower your risk. Dr. Austin recommends keeping your feet clean and dry, not picking or scratching at warts, and washing your hands if you come in contact with one. In addition, avoid walking barefoot in public facilities like locker rooms or around swimming pools. 

How are warts diagnosed?

To diagnose warts, Dr. Austin reviews your medical history and conducts a physical exam. Most warts are visible to the naked eye, but if he suspects the growth is something else, he might take a biopsy. To do this, Dr. Austin uses a scalpel to remove a small section of the lesion. Then, he sends it to a laboratory for additional testing and analysis.

How are warts treated?

Most warts are harmless and resolve on their own over time. If your warts are painful or affect your self-esteem, Dr. Austin can remove them during a quick, outpatient procedure. There are two ways to remove warts:

Peeling medicine

During this type of wart removal, Dr. Austin uses a chemical called salicylic acid. Salicylic acid causes the wart to peel away one layer at a time. It also helps stimulate your immune system’s ability to combat the wart and prevent it from recurring.

Cryotherapy 

During cryotherapy, Dr. Austin uses liquid nitrogen to freeze the wart. Before applying the liquid nitrogen to your wart, he administers a local anesthetic to ensure your comfort. Once applied, the liquid nitrogen causes the skin to die. As your body heals, the wart falls off. 

To further explore treatment for warts, make an appointment at the practice of Gerald D. Austin, DPM, by calling the office to speak with a caring member of the administrative staff, or by clicking the online booking tool.