What is a Verruca?
A verruca is a viral infection of the superficial layers of skin, it is similar to a wart however it is commonly found on the sole of the foot. These can be of varying size and number and can occur anywhere on the foot. Classically, they are well defined and have little black dots on the surface of the skin which are blood vessels that have been pushed towards the surface.
Verrucas may or may not be painful. An early stage verruca can look like a small, discoloured blemish on the skin, and can be easily mistaken for a corn. Sometimes a verruca can quickly spread into a cluster made up of many tiny verrucae. Verrucas that grow together in a cluster are known as mosaic warts. The pressure from normal standing and walking tends to force the verruca into the skin. Like all warts, they are harmless and may go away even without treatment, but in many cases they are too painful to ignore.
They are caused by the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) and are passed from person to person by direct contact. The virus is thought to thrive in moist, damp environments such as swimming pools, changing room floors and communal shower areas.