Yellow Pulsed Dye Laser Treatment for Warts
The common wart is called a verruca vulgaris and is caused by the human papillomavirus. The virus is most frequently contracted in wet areas such as pools, showers, or locker rooms. A person with a wart walks barefoot and sheds the virus on the floor. Anyone who steps on the shed virus can then get the virus and form a wart. Warts are usually easy to treat but on the bottom of the feet they can be much more difficult to get rid of. The skin on the bottom of the feet is very thick and the wart is pushed into the skin. Home remedies such as topical acids or over the counter freezing are frequently ineffectively. Your CFAC doctor can treat most warts with liquid nitrogen, injections with blistering agents or surgery. Some warts are very stubborn and require more advanced treatment. The yellow pulsed dye laser can be a very effective tool in the fight against warts.
The yellow pulsed dye laser is a new type of laser that is tuned to the color red. Where conventional lasers simply burn all tissue, the pulsed dye laser passes through the skin without damaging it. The laser then goes to the blood vessels (commonly known as seeds) that feed the wart and destroys them. This deprives the wart of its blood supply and the wart dies and falls off.
The pulsed dye laser has many advantages over conventional wart treatments. The pulsed dye laser does not create a scar. A scar on the bottom of the foot can be painful and is permanent. The laser leaves the skin intact so no wound is present and very little post operative care is needed. The pulsed dye laser is especially effective in treating large warts that have been resistant to other treatments and mosaic warts, which are large patches consisting of many smaller warts. The pulsed dye laser is also useful for large numbers of warts. Children who cannot tolerate other types of treatment can be treated with the pulsed dye laser under a brief general anesthesia.
Treating warts with the pulsed dye laser takes place in a hospital. The area to be treated is anesthetized with local anesthetic so the treatment will be painless. Treatment with the laser usually takes only a few minutes. Pain medicine is sometimes prescribed depending on how many areas are treated. Post operatively it is recommended that you decrease your activities for several days and use ice as needed. You may return to regular activities as tolerated follow up with your CFAC doctor to monitor healing. Use of the pulsed dye laser is covered under most insurance as would any outpatient surgery.
Our CFAC doctors have completed special training required to use the yellow pulsed dye laser and are happy to offer this service to our patients.