FAQS

How to identify a verruca?

Verrucas can occur anywhere on the soles of your feet or toes, usually on weight-bearing areas. On close inspection they can resemble tiny black dots under a rough, sometimes circular layer of skin. A slight depression in the centre of the affected area is a sign that the verruca has fully formed. Also, the skin can have a harder edge around a softer centre.

First symptoms are usually a feeling of pain or tenderness when applying pressure to the affected area from standing or walking.

NHS - warts and verrucas

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How to identify a wart?

Warts can develop on almost any area of your body; however, they are most commonly found on your palms, knuckles, fingers and knees. Warts often form a raised area of skin that is firm and rough to the touch. It’s common to have more than one wart at a time. The term ‘mosaic wart’ is used to describe tightly packed clusters of warts that resemble a mosaic.

NHS - warts and verrucas


How do you get verrucas/warts?

Verrucas and warts are caused by a virus usually spread through skin-to-skin contact, or from coming into contact with a contaminated surface. Warts and verrucas spread more easily when the skin’s surface is wet or damaged.

It’s important to:

  • always wash your hands after touching a verruca/wart.
  • make sure you always wear clean socks if you have a verruca.
  • be careful not to irritate or cut the wart.

Do not:

  • share socks, towels, gloves or shoes with someone who has a verruca/wart.
  • bite nails on fingers which are affected with warts.
  • scratch, or pick the verruca/wart.
  • do not walk barefoot in public places if you have a verruca.

NHS - warts and verrucas

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How long does it take for a verruca or wart to come up?

Whilst times vary, it can take months for a verruca/wart to appear after contact with the virus.

NHS - warts and verrucas


How long do verrucas last?

Times vary and this can depend on whether you try to treat the verruca or not. Whilst both warts and verrucas usually resolve on their own, it might take months, or even years.

NHS - warts and verrucas


What happens if you don’t treat a verruca?

In most cases they go away on their own, however, this might take months, or even years. They can spread to other people if left untreated.

NHS - warts and verrucas


How long do warts last untreated?

Untreated warts can last from a few weeks, to several years. They eventually go away without treatment, however, treating will usually help get rid of them more quickly. In children, warts have a shorter lifespan and usually disappear more quickly.

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What does a verruca feel like?

Whilst verrucas usually don’t cause you any harm, they can be painful and cause extreme discomfort and sometimes itchiness. The first symptom is usually tenderness when walking. People often describe the pain as feeling sharp, like standing on a needle. Verrucas are usually more painful than warts.

NHS - warts and verrucas


Do verrucas bleed?

On closer examination, small black spots can be seen in the verruca. These are not roots, as some people believe. The black spots are caused by bleeding in the verruca as a result of standing and walking on it.

NHS – warts and verrucas

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How to treat verrucas/warts?

There are various ways you can treat verrucas/warts. Your local pharmacist may opt for a clinically proven topical treatment such as Bazuka Gel or Bazuka Treatment Gel. These products are suitable for adults, children and the elderly. They contain salicylic acid which gradually removes the affected skin tissue and may help to stimulate an immune response against the virus. Both these actions serve to eliminate the virus.

For a treatment that visibly works on first application, try Bazuka Sub-Zero. Based on the cryotherapy method used by doctors this fast to use and effective formula freezes verrucas or warts to the core.

When no other treatments work, or if you have a wart on your face, you might be referred to a skincare specialist. Minor surgery and treatment with a laser or high intensity light may be necessary in some cases.

NHS - warts and verrucas


What’s the normal size of a verruca?

Verrucas vary in size, however they usually range between 1mm and 1cm in diameter.


What is the difference between corns, calluses and verrucas?

Unlike verrucas, corns and calluses are not caused by a virus. Rather, they are hard or thick areas of skin caused by abrasion and rubbing of the skin, usually on the hands or feet. Corns are small lumps of hard skin whereas calluses are larger patches of rough, thick skin.

Verrucas on the other hand are caused by a virus, are usually confined to your feet and have tiny black dots in their centre.

NHS - corns and calluses

NHS - warts and verrucas


What causes corns and calluses?

Corns and calluses are caused by pressure or rubbing of the skin, usually confined to the hands and feet. The causes include wearing high heels or uncomfortable shoes, not wearing socks with your shoes, playing musical instruments and/or using gym weights/equipment.

NHS - corns and calluses


How to treat corns and calluses?

Corns and calluses are rarely anything to worry about, but there are things you can do to help treat and prevent them.

It’s important to:

  • wear cushioned socks to avoid abrasion.
  • wear wide shoes with a low heel which are not constricting and do not rub.
  • use soft insoles to avoid rubbing.
  • regularly remove the hard skin by soaking in warm water to soften them and then rubbing with a pumice stone.
  • moisturise the affected area to help keep skin soft and help prevent calluses/corns from forming.
  • use protective gloves when using gym equipment.

Do not:

  • cut off corns or calluses yourself.
  • walk for long distances without the appropriate footwear or stand for prolonged periods of time.
  • wear high heels or tight pointy shoes.
  • go barefoot, especially when outside.

Ask your GP or pharmacist about protective heels/insoles, as well as pain killers if your corns/calluses are causing discomfort or pain. They might also be able to recommend various over-the-counter products to help treat the problem.

NHS - corns and calluses


How to use Bazuka Gel

Only use Bazuka Gel on verrucas, warts, corns and calluses. Before use, make sure to find a suitable surface in case of accidental spillage. Follow these steps once every day usually in the evening, and carry on using until the verruca/wart disappears:

  1. Soak the affected area in warm water for 2 to 3 minutes. Dry the area thoroughly, using your own towel to avoid spreading infection.
  2. Apply a thin coating (one or two drops) of the gel to the top of the wart, verruca, corn or callus only.
  3. The next evening, carefully peel or pick off the white patch of dried gel from the wart, verruca, corn or callus. Then repeat steps 1 & 2.
  4. Once a week, before applying fresh gel, gently rub the wart, verruca, corn or callus with the emery board provided or a pumice stone.

How to use Bazuka Extra Strength Gel

Only use Bazuka Extra Strength Gel on warts, verrucas, corns and calluses. Before use, make sure to find a suitable surface in case of accidental spillage. Follow these steps once every day usually in the evening, and carry on using until the verruca/wart disappears:

  1. Soak the affected area in warm water for 2 to 3 minutes. Dry the area thoroughly, using your own towel to avoid spreading infection.
  2. Apply a thin coating (one or two drops) of the gel to the top of the wart, verruca, corn or callus only.
  3. The next evening, carefully peel or pick off the white patch of dried gel from the wart, verruca, corn or callus. Then repeat steps 1 & 2.
  4. Once a week, before applying fresh gel, gently rub the wart, verruca, corn or callus with the emery board provided or a pumice stone.

How to use Bazuka Treatment Gel

Only use Bazuka Treatment Gel on warts, verrucas, corns and calluses. Before use, make sure to find a suitable surface in case of accidental spillage. Follow these steps once every day usually in the evening, and carry on using until the verruca/wart disappears:

  1. Soak the affected area in warm water for 2 to 3 minutes. Dry the area thoroughly, using your own towel to avoid spreading infection.
  2. Apply a thin coating (one or two drops) of the gel to the top of the wart, verruca, corn or callus only.
  3. The next evening, carefully peel or pick off the white patch of dried gel from the wart, verruca, corn or callus. Then repeat steps 1 & 2.
  4. Once a week, before applying fresh gel, gently rub the wart, verruca, corn or callus with the emery board provided or a pumice stone.

How to use Bazuka Extra Strength Treatment Gel

Only use Bazuka Extra Strength Treatment Gel on warts or verrucas. Before use, make sure to find a suitable surface in case of accidental spillage. Follow these steps once every day, and carry on using until the verruca/wart disappears:

  1. Soak the affected area in warm water for 2 to 3 minutes. Dry the area thoroughly, using your own towel to avoid spreading infection.
  2. Apply a thin coating (one or two drops) of the gel to the top of the wart or verruca only.
  3. The next evening, carefully peel or pick off the white patch of dried gel from the wart or verruca. Then repeat steps 1 & 2.
  4. Once a week, before applying fresh gel, gently rub the wart or verruca with the emery board provided or a pumice stone.

How to use Bazuka Sub-Zero

Only use Bazuka Sub-Zero on warts and verrucas on the hands and feet. Bazuka Sub-Zero should not be used more than 3 times on individual warts or verrucas, and each freezing application should be at least two weeks apart. Follow these steps:

  1. Soak the verruca or wart in warm water for a few minutes.
  2. Dry using your own towel to avoid spreading infection. After drying, gently file with an emery board or pumice stone.
  3. After removing the see-through safety cap, insert one of the foam applicators into the blue tip of the hollow spout of the aerosol can. Then replace the safety cap, orientated with the arrows in the ‘ON’ position, and press down for three seconds to charge the foam applicator. You will hear a hissing sound as it charges.
  4. Immediately after charging, remove the safety cap and hold the canister so that the foam applicator is pressed against the verruca or wart with a constant, light pressure for the time specified in the table below.
Determine your freeze contact time using this table

For those with delicate skin, a shorter contact time of half the recommended number of seconds may be advisable.

Lesion Diameter WART Contact Time
Small
(less than 2.5mm)
10 seconds
Medium-sized
(from 2.5mm to 5mm)
15 seconds
Large
(larger than 5mm)
20 seconds
VERRUCA Contact Time
Table foot For verrucas on the toes and instep, use the same contact time as shown for warts, determined according to verruca size. For verrucas on the heel and ball of foot, contact time can be increased up to a maximum of twice the corresponding time shown for warts – i.e. depending on size, up to a maximum of between 20 and 40 seconds.
Area max. 20sec. Area max. 40sec.