RE: The Plantar Wart Of Horror
I am returning because i found this site the most helpful at the time.
Firstly i did not know i had the plantar wart on my right big toe for more than thirty years. I had memories of walking barefoot in my late teens walking from the local swimming pool. During this walk i had punctured my toe with a very very small shard of glass i guess and merely put a fresh sock over it from memory. No first aid or even a band aid. And then i remember no more other than tinea that remained. Or at least that is what i thought it was. Mainly between the toes in the form of cracking skin and pain. I lived with the tinea and did not give a second thought to the thickened skin that was covering the plantar wart on my big toe so that i believed it was just a corn or caused by the way i was walking. Odd because the other foot had no such thickening of the skin like a callous.
More recently (Almost a year ago now), the big toe became subject to a softening of the big toenail. The callous was more sore to walk on than usual. My frequent sock changing and attention to keeping my feet dry was not as effective. I concluded i was getting old and that my immune system was not coping as well with the tinea and maybe it was my Achilles heel. Hope you get the picture. I was puzzled and getting worried. Especially because i noticed that the veins around the toe were more prominent. Was i getting gangrene?...these and more questions were like a hornets nest in my mind at the time.
I decided to take some action and after reading some anecdotes on this site (and others) i wanted to test the possibility that perhaps i had a plantar wart. The toenail was not sore but the callous area was. My chemist recommended Whitfords ointment which is a blend of Salicytic acid and something else. From this treatment i came to the conclusion there was something underneath the callous and it began to dawn on me that this might be a Plantar wart.
The ointment was only on the surface and was not doing much below so i decided to obtain some dressing that would make it possible to keep the ointment in one place and not become absorbed by socks or the dressing itself. I used a waterproof dressing made of a thin film of plastic that was stretchable. This i concluded would keep the ointment in one place so it could do its job over an extended period without becoming absorbed by socks, footwear and such. It worked, but it did little to remove the the thick callous over the wart. I used a pumice stone abut not much was achieved.
It was around this time that i wanted to really get to the bottom of it and i was in pain by now. The plantar wart was aggravated in hind-site by the ointment, though not enough to stimulate a complete immune reaction.
After reading through many of the anecdotes found here, i summoned enough courage to do what i instinctively felt had to be done, and that was to aggravate the wart so that the healing process could begin.
I decided to try the vinegar method and was not willing to undergo surgery or freeze methods as i was well aware by now that they were not always successful due to the root being left behind after the surgery. My wart was so old, i anticipated it was very deep, and, i was right from experience now that i am wart free.
My method was to soak a small 1cm gauze that was folded a few times in vinegar (Very heavily soaked). I used white vinegar the first time. Then, i wrapped the plastic waterproof bandage (I used 'Leukoflex# is a transparent surgical tape. It is impermeable to water.
Suitable for use as an occlusive dressing to seal in topical medication.) around it so that i could really let the the vinegar totally pickle the wart without drying out or soaking into the sock or footwear. I did not want to pussy foot around with dribs and drabs of vinegar applications for years. I wanted action.
The gauze stayed wet/damp all day and so i even slept with it.
By the second day, there was definitely a reaction. The callous was no longer relatively flat. It had become bulbous and even considerably/much higher than the surrounding area.
Mainly......it started to become ***very*** painful. So painful in fact that i became considerably worried. I persisted for one more day, and by then it was so painful and swollen i decided to see my doctor and discuss the matter. (Thoughts of death and other dark thoughts were profuse with fear.)I was mainly worried about secondary infection at this time. Clearly, it was so painful and swollen and yellow looking that my doctor could only advise me to have a script for antibiotics on hand in case dreaded secondary infection took hold.
I came home (A long drive) and limped to the bathroom. By this time it was so painful, i was nearly passing out. I took to it with some pumice stone to see if i could sand or wear the top of the bulbous eruption down to see what was under it making it so elevated and painful.
After sanding away at it for a few minutes, i reached a point where a clear liquid with a little blood came out. There was almost an instant relief at this point as the pressure of the liquid (A watered down puss) was able to escape instead of continually building up pressure. It was my first major hurdle and victory. Because it was bulbous, it made it easier to use the pumice stone to take the top of it. Like a blister made of very thick skin.
I was then sure that there had been something underneath the callous skin all those years.
At this point i stopped using vinegar and all that was important to me was to let it settle and wait and see. To this end, i became obsessed with finding ways of keeping the wound sterile during this waiting. Being on my foot this was going to be quite a task.
I used iodine tincture, and decided to go to a different chemist for advice. My reasoning was that chemists actually might be more informed than GP's as they get to see dozens of people from a broad spectrum of doctors with different methods and such.
The GP immediately went on to tell me that he was not just a pharmacist but that he also had a qualification as a chemist. His advice was to tell me to go to my doctor and ask for a script of Silver Sulfadiazene. He said it was 'better than all the other antiseptics put together' (I agree with him now). Also he recommended i use silver activated bandages to cover the wound.
On this advice i went further and purchased some pure silver and distilled water and batteries to make a colloidal silver solution to spray in my shoes and on my socks for extra protection.
My doctor took a look at the wound and willingly filled out a script for Silver Sulfadiazene. She was visibly worried.
In hindsight, the Silver Sulfadiazene is used on burns victims and in my opinion, although the vinegar did not burn the healthy skin, it behaved as though it burnt the plantar wart and so treating the wound that resulted as a burn and to keep it moist and prevent the skin from cracking was the right way to go.
Eventually it settled but was still very sore. I did begin a course of antibiotics to be on the safe side as my GP suggested
I kept the wound covered with the plastic non breathable plastic bandage and although it looked terrible, it was at this time i first became aware of the hole in the center of the wound that is said to be the way the wart breathes. I could tell it was very deep and i had some way to go.
As i was taking the antibiotics (After about one and a half/two weeks after the first treatment with vinegar.) and the dead skin of the callous was beginning to recede, and because i was starting to see some signs of pink skin, i decided to see what would happen with another treatment of vinegar.
It was even more painful and stopped two days later. I could barely walk. The second treatment did aggravate the wart and it was more painful than the first treatment perhaps because it was attacking/aggravating the root of the wart. I think this was the case.
So i stopped and continued dressing the wound with Silver Sulfadiazene and kept it moist as though i was a burns victim. I took a photo diary of each dressing change which i performed every day approximately.
It was only in nearly the third/fourth week that the dead skin and the necrotic kind of black ring around the hole became visible and i suspect this was the wart dying at the time that i really felt i was making progress.
After the fourth week and seeing the blackened area underneath lifting, i knew i was on the way to victory. There was pink skin but i could still make out a very small hole in the middle so i tried one more application of vinegar which was excruciating, but that was it. It was short lived pain and did not hurt from then on.
The skin was still falling off and new skin comming up underneath. It was at this time i used more breathbale dressing and less silver sulfadiazene. It was at this point that i let the skin geeet some air and eventually there was no scar and the wart has not returned. It has been almost a year now.
No more callous. And my tinea has also disappeared. Also, the rotting toe nail dissapeared also.
My parting comment is that my treatment differed somwhat to what i have read here in that i treatede the wound as though it was 3rd degree burn.
I believe that in doing so, i did not allow the skin to crack that can also be fertile ground for another wart infection.
I think Silver Sulfadiazene is awesome as an antiseptic.
I think colloidal silver is a great way to keep shoes and socks sterile for extended periods as an extra measure of protection.
Sorry if my timeline is not really exact. Overall, the entire process to being wart free took about four weeks, and after it died the healthy skin happened very quickly. And left no scar whatsoever. Evenb though it looked horrific to begin with. I attribut this to keeping the wound moist as the wart under the callous was huge and there was considerable necrotic skin that had to dissolve and be expelled.
I did use MediHoney for about two days, but it was too difficult to keep the wound flooded with it. Otherwise, the MediHoney might have been just as good as the Silver Sulfadiazene
At one point the wound became dry so i stopped using it and switched back to the Silver Sulfadiazene.
The medihoney was very good at cleaning the wound of dead necrotic tissue and skin.
Overall, i think the Vinegar is to start the process. I do not think it is necessary to continue until the wound heals. Then re-applying vinegar is a sure test to find out if any wart remains. In my case, there was a tiny amount of root left and vinegar managed to do its work on that as well. Further applications later did not hurt at all or harm the new skin in my case.
RE: The Plantar Wart Of Horror