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Plantar warts are small growths on the bottoms of your child’s feet. Plantar warts are caused by a virus. They spread easily from person to person. Children are more likely to get the virus if they have weak immune systems.
The virus that causes plantar warts is not life-threatening. But the warts can be uncomfortable and difficult to treat.
Your child's care team might need to try more than one treatment for plantar warts.
There are several topical ways to treat plantar warts. These include:
Your child's care team will decide which topical treatment to try first. If the topical treatments do not work, then your child's care team might recommend minor surgery. Usually, surgery is the last method they will try.
Your child’s care team will try the topical treatment they think will work best. Then, they will bandage the wart.
Your child can do everyday activities after treatment. But they should not take a bath or shower for 24 hours or until told to do so.
After 3 days, your child’s doctor may ask you to replace the bandage.
After 10 to 14 days, your child will go back to see their care team. They will check the foot and do any other treatments your child needs.
If topical treatment does not work, the care team might recommend minor surgery to take off the wart. Your child may have it removed in their doctor's office or at a podiatry clinic.
The doctor will:
After the wart removal, follow the care team's instructions. They may include:
You can usually take off your child’s bandage the next morning. They may be able to take a shower or bathe.
Next, you can apply antibiotic ointment on the spot where the doctor removed the wart. Cover this area with a self-stick bandage, but not too tightly. If the bandage falls off, you can put on a new one.
Keep using the antibiotic ointment and bandages until your child’s next appointment.
You can take steps to prevent plantar warts. Your child should:
If you have questions about plantar warts, please contact your primary care provider or a podiatry clinic.
Reviewed: September 2022