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How to Use Salicylic Acid to Remove Plantar Warts?

If you have warts on the soles of your feet, you can treat them with various treatments, one of the most recommended is salicylic acid.

These lesions are unsightly and can even be uncomfortable depending on the type of footwear you use. Learn more about how to use salicylic acid to remove plantar warts.

Is salicylic acid effective for removing plantar warts?

Woman using salicylic acid

Plantar warts, as the name suggests, appear on the soles of the feet, usually in areas where there is more pressure when walking.

The lesions are typically flat and small, caused by an infection of the human papillomavirus (HPV). The virus enters this area of the skin if it finds cuts or breaks.

Plantar warts do not present symptoms or any risk, and sometimes disappear without needing treatment, although you must wait up to two years or more for them to go away.

At first glance, due to their hard and bulky appearance, it seems like a callus, but with the difference that if you squeeze it, it hurts and can even present black dots on the outer layer.

Once the plantar wart is diagnosed, salicylic acid can become your best ally to remove it.

Salicylic acid is a keratolytic substance that acts directly on the wart by burning the most superficial layer of the skin, causing it to dry out and fall off.

It also helps to stimulate the immune system to help the body fight the lesion.

In addition to being effective for removing these plantar lesions, it is an economical and painless treatment.

How to apply salicylic acid?

Woman thinking

You can buy salicylic acid at any pharmacy or natural store without a prescription. You can find it in different forms: liquid, patch, tape, or gel.

Each form includes usage instructions; it is advisable to follow your doctor’s directions. But generally, these are the steps:

  1. For the salicylic acid to penetrate and act effectively on the lesion, we recommend soaking the wart in water for a while before applying the treatment. This will allow the skin to soften.
  2. Dry the area well and apply the salicylic acid directly to the wart. Make sure it does not extend to healthy skin.
  3. Then cover the area with a bandage. Preferably perform the treatment at night so that you leave it to act for several hours.
  4. In the morning, remove the substance with plenty of water and with a file or pumice stone remove the dead tissue. Scrape the area carefully and at the end discard the skin remnants. Do not attempt to remove it with the first application, as you can cause injury or infection in the area.

Remember that this dead tissue contains the active virus, so you must take the proper precautions so that it does not spread to other parts of the skin. You should also discard the file after using it.

You should repeat the procedure every day until it is removed. This could take several weeks. After several applications, the plantar wart will soften and you will be able to remove it easily.

In case you observe any reaction or pain when applying salicylic acid, you should stop using it and wash the area with plenty of water.

These were some tips to help you know how to deal with HPV. However, there is much more you need to do if you really want to get rid of HPV and warts forever.

What you need to do is GET RID OF THE ROOT of the problem.

For that reason, I recommend you to look into Dr. Kirkland's story and how he was able to cure HPV and get rid of warts for good.

Click here to see what he did

I wish you great success in your recovery!


Medically reviewed by Dr. John Wellington. Dr. John Wellington is a board-certified physician specializing in urology. With over 15 years of experience, he is passionate about sharing his knowledge through a popular health blog. Dr. Wellington holds an MD from Ivy League University and is a member of prestigious medical associations.

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