A mosaic wart looks like a rough area on the bottom of your feet that has a number of small black dots in it. You might mistake mosaic warts for calluses, but they are actually clusters of plantar warts and can be painful when you walk. It is possible to treat them using over-the-counter medicines, prescription drugs, surgery, home remedies or freezing. Here is what you need to know about mosaic warts and getting rid of them.
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Understanding mosaic plantar warts
Mosaic warts are groups of tiny plantar warts that form plaques or clusters on the bottom of your feet. They are flat and may appear as if they have numerous small black dots in them. While some people call the black dots seeds, the dots are actually blood vessels that have grown inside of the warts. They commonly grow on the balls and heels of your feet, making them particularly uncomfortable when you walk.
While mosaic warts will eventually disappear without treatment, you will likely want to treat them because of their ugliness and the pain that they can cause. They are caused by HPV 1 when people contact the virus when walking barefoot on infected surfaces such as bathroom floors, locker room floors and swimming pool decks. The virus can live for months without finding a host. It accesses the body by entering through cuts, scrapes, cracks or other damaged areas of the skin. Not everyone who encounters HPV 1 will get warts, however. Some people, including children, people with immune system problems, people who have had plantar warts before and those who have damaged skin are likelier to get mosaic plantar warts than are others. Read this article about plantar warts on toes for more information.
Mosaic warts do not have seeds although they contain small black dots. The black dots are areas where blood vessels have bled into the warts. You should not try to dig out the dots as doing so might make the warts spread further and to bleed.
Mosaic warts on feet: Get coping tips
Your body reacts to mosaic warts by forming callouses over them, which can increase the discomfort that you experience when walking. You can take simple steps to cope with them when you have them, however. You might try soaking your feet in warm water and then using an emery board to file away some of the dead skin that covers your mosaic warts. After doing so, you will then want to apply your chosen medicine to the wart.
Covering your mosaic warts with bandages can help lessen the pain while also helping to prevent them from spreading to other parts of your feet. You will also want to be sure to wear comfortable shoes, and you should avoid wearing high heels because of the added pressure they can cause to the balls of your feet. Applying duct tape over the top of the wart may also help to speed healing. If you try this, apply a strip of the tape over your wart after you apply your chosen medication.
The most efficient tips to getting rid of mosaic warts
Getting rid of mosaic warts takes time. Like other plantar warts, they can be very stubborn.
There are multiple methods for getting rid of mosaic warts, including the following:
- Cryotherapy, which is having the warts frozen so that they die and fall off.
- Covering them with duct tape and leaving the duct tape on for days.
- Having them surgically removed.
- Using prescription medications.
- Over-the-counter medications.
- Natural remedies such as apple cider vinegar.
Cryotherapy involves your doctor using liquid nitrogen to freeze your mosaic wart. The doctor may first trim the edges of your wart before applying the liquid nitrogen. He or she might also give you a local anesthetic as cryotherapy can be painful. He or she will paint on the liquid nitrogen or spray it on.
If you choose cryotherapy, you will likely need to return for repeat treatments up to four times. Doctors generally schedule repeat visits between one and three weeks apart. You might also perform cryotherapy at home using an over-the-counter treatment from your local pharmacy. Can you cut out a plantar wart? Learn more by reading this article.
Duct tape is also sometimes used by people to rid themselves of mosaic warts. With this treatment, you cut a piece of duct tape that is roughly the same size as your wart. Leave it on for 6 days before removing the tape and soaking your foot in warm water. Then, use an emery board to file away dead skin. Reapply duct tape and repeat the process. You can do this for up to two months. It works by removing the top layers of the wart until it is gone.
Some people apply apple cider vinegar to their mosaic warts in an effort to get rid of them. To do this, you soak cotton balls in ACV and rub it over your wart. Then, you apply a bandage over the top of the wart. You continue repeating this for several weeks until the wart is gone.
Prescription medications are available for treating warts, including Aldara cream and prescription salicylic acid creams. You can also choose to purchase over-the-counter topical treatments to get rid of your warts. Surgical removal of mosaic warts can be done by your doctor if nothing else works to get rid of your warts.
Mosaic warts are flat because of their location on the bottom of your feet. When you walk, your entire weight is placed on the warts, causing them to grow inward rather than outward. This also makes them painful and may alter how you walk.
Mosaic wart treatment
About 50 percent of mosaic warts will go away with over-the-counter topical creams. More stubborn cases of mosaic warts may require surgical removal or cryotherapy. You should start by trying an over-the-counter remedy before attempting surgical options as they are fairly effective and require less recovery time. Here are the top two mosaic wart treatments that are available on the market. Learn more about home remedies for plantar warts by reading this article.
Top 2 products to remove mosaic warts
The top treatments for at-home wart removal are well known by the public. They are inexpensive and work relatively quickly.
- Compound W Maximum Strength Wart Remover Gel
Where you can find it: Online at Jet.com or at your local retail pharmacy.
How it works: The gel is made of salicyclic acid, which removes the top skin layers of the wart and kills it. To use the gel, soak your affected foot in warm water for about 5 minutes and cleanse the wart. Then, paint the gel over the surface and cover the wart with a bandage. Do this twice daily until the wart is gone.
- Dr. Scholl’s Clear Away Wart Remover for Plantar Warts
Where you can find it: online at Target.com or at your local retailer or pharmacy.
How it works: Like Compound W, Dr. this product is made out of salicylic acid, which is effective in killing warts. To use it, clean your wart and soak your foot before applying the cream. Keep it covered with a bandage, and repeat the process twice each day until your wart disappears.
The great thing about these over-the-counter treatments is that they are painless, unlike cryotherapy or surgery. If you remember to apply the gel or cream twice daily, your wart should be gone in no time.
Mosaic warts are very common, and you should not be ashamed if you have them. The good news is that they can be treated and will not last forever. By using over-the-counter medications and at-home remedies, you can rid yourself of mosaic warts. If the warts do not go away with over-the-counter medications, you may need to have them removed at your doctor’s office. Make sure to wear shoes when you are walking in warm, moist areas so that you are less likely to get them again in the future.