The Causes of Facial Warts and Effective Removal Methods: Insights from a Dermatologist

Why Do Facial Warts Occur And How To Remove Them: Dermatologist Explains

Warts, benign growths on the skin, can develop anywhere on the body, including the face. While they typically require no treatment and disappear on their own, some individuals may opt for home remedies or medical interventions, particularly if the warts are visible.

Why Do Facial Warts Occur And How To Remove Them: Dermatologist Explains

During an interview with the OnlyMyHealth team, Dr. Amit Bangia, Associate Director of Dermatology at Asian Hospital in Faridabad, elaborated on the causes of facial warts, described various types, and outlined available treatment options.

Factors Leading to the Development of Facial Warts

The Human Papillomavirus (HPV), comprising more than 200 strains, is the primary cause of all warts. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), at least 13 of over 100 known HPV genotypes have been linked to cancers such as cervical, anogenital, and head and neck cancers.

Dr. Bangia explains, “HPV prompts excessive accumulation of dead skin cells on the skin’s surface, leading to wart formation.” He further notes, “Warts spread through close contact, particularly via shared items like handkerchiefs, towels, or through direct skin contact, and are more likely to occur in moist or damaged skin, such as around communal areas like swimming pools and temples. Habits like nail-biting and shaving can contribute to wart transmission.”

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) suggest that HPV transmission can occur through vaginal, anal, or oral sex with an infected individual.

Varieties of Facial Warts

Three typical varieties of facial warts exist:

Verrucae vulgaris present as elevated lumps with rough textures.

Verruca plana manifest as smooth, flattened bumps or lumps and can appear on any facial area, although they predominantly occur on the face.

Filiform warts resemble slender, elongated threads, often clustered together, and are more commonly found on the eyelids and lips.

Treatment Options

Treatment Options

“Depending on the location of the warts,” stated Dr. Bangia, “treatment methods vary.” He emphasized, “For facial warts, my preference is radiofrequency cautery or electrocautery, utilizing high-frequency radio waves to excise the tissue.”

“Alternatively, cryotherapy is an option, although it may result in post-inflammatory hypopigmentation in certain cases,” he added. Cryotherapy involves freezing abnormal tissue using extreme cold.

Dr. Bangia noted that salicylic acid, despite its efficacy in aiding skin exfoliation, isn’t commonly recommended for facial wart treatment due to the risk of burns and scarring.

However, for warts on the hands or feet, options such as cryotherapy with liquid nitrogen spray, radiofrequency cautery, or CO2 laser are viable. Salicylic acid can be employed for foot warts as it typically doesn’t induce pigmentation changes in that area of the skin.