Types of warts on the skin: photos of growths, why are they dangerous and how to treat

Warts are small growths on the skin of the body or face. Their formation is associated with the activity of the human papillomavirus (HPV). There are about a hundred strains of this virus, each of which causes the formation of different types of warts.

What is a wart?

wart on the skin of the foot

Even the most well-groomed and healthy skin may develop warts - small rounded nodules that belong to benign neoplasms.

A wart is a benign growth on the skin of the body that is associated with the activity of the HPV virus. This virus infects about 70% of the world's population. Because of its action, a pathological process of epidermal cell division begins, the result of which is the appearance of a small skin growth, or warts.

There are different types of warts that are caused by different strains of the virus. Not all warts are of a viral nature; senile growths that appear due to changes in metabolic processes in the body are separately isolated.

To get rid of a build-up, you need to understand the reasons for its occurrence. This will help the following memo on the types of warts on the body, their features and methods of dealing with them.

Vulgar warts

Simple, or vulgar, warts are small, round growths that do not differ in color from skin tone. They arise due to the action of the human papillomavirus. Favorite localization sites are areas with increased sweating. Vulgar warts are most often located on the hands, feet, back, and sides.

It takes about several months from the moment of infection with the virus to the appearance of such growths. If a person's immunity is strong, the body itself will defeat the virus, and warts on the skin will not appear. The activation of the pathological process and the formation of unaesthetic growths occurs against the background of a decrease in general and local immunity. Due to the peculiarities of the location of vulgar warts, this process is often caused by a decrease in local immunity, for example, if the skin is damaged, or due to excessive sweating of the feet and palms.

Vulgar warts are considered benign growths. They almost never degenerate into a malignant neoplasm.

Anyone can get vulgar warts. Children, adolescents and adults alike often encounter them. You can remove them in several ways:

  • cryodestruction;
  • laser;
  • surgical method;
  • preparations with alkalis in the composition;
  • folk remedies.

It is recommended to remove large vulgar warts in the dermatologist's office, as self-treatment can be fraught with scarring.

vulgar warts on the fingers

Vulgar warts are the most common type.

Flat warts

The types of warts from the photo are easy enough to recognize on your own. Flat warts are one of the rare types. They account for no more than 4% of cases of growths on the skin.

Features of flat warts:

  • diameter is not more than 5 mm;
  • slight elevation above the skin;
  • irregular shape;
  • clear boundaries;
  • smooth surface;
  • slight pigmentation.

Such warts differ slightly in color from healthy skin - they are slightly more pink or brown, which makes them easy to visualize. The second name for flat warts is juvenile. They appear more often in children and adolescents. The classic locations are the skin of the legs, hands, face.

Juvenile warts are viral in nature and are caused by HPV. They are not prone to degeneration into a malignant neoplasm, therefore, they are conditionally safe.

Such growths do not pose a health hazard and do not cause discomfort, except for aesthetic. If there are a lot of them or they are located in open areas of the body, it will not be difficult to remove the growth. In order to avoid the formation of scars and scars, it is recommended to use cryodestruction, electrocoagulation or laser removal.


condyloma on the eyelid

For the health of women, condylomas and papillomas pose a much more serious threat than for men.

Warts are small growths with a papillary structure that affect the external genitalia in women and men. These growths are viral in nature, the HPV strain that causes the appearance of such warts is sexually transmitted.

Features of genital warts:

  • small size and the presence of a thin leg;
  • the color does not differ from the shade of the skin or mucous membrane;
  • can merge into large neoplasms;
  • easily injured.

Warts are types of warts that are easily recognizable from the photo. Most often they are localized on the external genital organs in women, around the glans penis and on the shaft of the penis in men. Condylomas affect the perineum, the area around the anus, and in rare cases are found in the mouth.

Certain strains of the HPV virus can cause genital warts in women on the cervix. This type of growth is very dangerous and causes cervical cancer. Common condylomas located on the labia minora or penis are usually not oncogenic.

Liquid nitrogen is most often used to remove them. This tool allows you to get rid of the build-up without scarring. Removal of genital warts can be carried out using a radio knife.

At home, it is impossible to remove neoplasms on the mucous membranes, since the epithelium of the genital organs can be damaged.


Papillomas are a type of skin warts, there are several types of them on the skin. In fact, a vulgar wart is a type of papilloma. These growths can appear on any part of the body, including mucous membranes. They are a soft ball of a uniform structure that rises above the skin thanks to a small leg. Papillomas are caused by the HPV virus; depending on the strain, they can affect both the epidermis and the mucous membranes. The most dangerous places for localization of growths:

  • urethra;
  • larynx;
  • anal opening;
  • armpits;
  • inguinal folds;
  • soles of the feet.

Papillomas in the urethra cause physical discomfort, as the body perceives them as a potentially dangerous object. They can grow and lead to urethral stricture in men, so they must be removed.

Laryngeal growths can cause permanent throat irritation and voice changes. Papillomas in the anus are easily injured and can become inflamed. The growths located in the folds of the skin are severely chafed when walking. This can lead to irritation and infection.

Papillomas are potentially dangerous skin growths. Only a doctor can accurately determine the risk of oncogenicity.

Injury and damage to such growths can lead to the development of a malignant process, therefore, papillomas located in uncomfortable places that can be accidentally touched by nails or rubbed with clothes must be removed.

Papillomas can appear in people of any age and gender. To remove them, use the methods used in the treatment of vulgar warts.


keratoma on the skin of the body

A common site of localization of senile keratoma is the back of the arms, face and neck, less often they can be located on the trunk.

Keratoma is an overgrowth of the stratum corneum of the skin. It is a brown spot that rises above the skin. The structure of the spot is quite dense, which is due to keratinization (keratinization) of the upper layer of the epidermis.

The main reasons for the development of keratomas are the effect of ultraviolet radiation on the skin and age-related changes in the epidermis. Such neoplasms are not a consequence of HPV and are classified as age-related dermatological disorders. Keratomas appear only in people over 50.

They are considered safe neoplasms, the degree of oncogenicity is very low. Such growths can be located on any open areas of the body.

The neoplasm itself is a clear cosmetic defect, so it can be removed. Keratomas should be disposed of by professional methods - cryodestruction, laser removal, electrocoagulation. Especially large neoplasms are removed by surgical excision.

Filiform papillomas

There are several types of warty neoplasms on the body, one of the common types of warts are filamentous papillomas. They appear in people over 40. Most often, women encounter such neoplasms, since their skin is thinner than that of men. Localization of filiform papillomas:

  • neck;
  • armpits;
  • face;
  • eyelids;
  • the area under the mammary glands;
  • inguinal folds.

This type of growth is a small oblong papilla that rises above the skin. The size of the papillae is very small - no more than 1 mm in diameter and several mm in length.

Filamentous outgrowths do not pose a health hazard, since they almost never degenerate into malignant neoplasms. The only exceptions are cases of severe damage to the growths and secondary infection.

It is impossible to remove filamentous papillomas with folk or pharmacy remedies. Due to their small size, the aggressive action of alkalis and acidic agents can lead to the formation of a deep wound, in the place of which a large scar will remain. To remove these small build-ups, it is best to opt for a laser, electrocautery, or liquid nitrogen.

filamentous papillomas on the skin

Filamentous papillomas often affect the neck and armpits.

Plantar warts

Another manifestation of the HPV virus is plantar warts, or spines. These neoplasms are a flat plaque that looks like a callus that appears on the foot. The peculiarity of such a wart is that it goes deep under the skin, while the upper part of the growth is flat and practically does not stand out against the background of a healthy epidermis.

Plantar warts grow deeper into the skin and hurt when pressed. They can be encountered by both children and adults. The spines should be removed using a laser, cryodestruction, or a surgical method. Home remedies are only effective for removing small spines that are no more than 2–3 mm in diameter.

The barbs are very uncomfortable, but they are safe, as they do not degenerate into cancer.

plantar wart

A plantar wart is not dangerous, but it causes discomfort when walking.

Diagnostics - which doctor should you contact?

To diagnose and remove warts on the skin of the body and face, you should consult a dermatologist. A visual examination is performed to make a diagnosis. Examination with a dermatoscope will help to accurately determine the type of growth.

If growths appear on the genitals, you should consult a gynecologist (for women), a urologist (for men) or a venereologist. A PCR analysis of a urogenital smear is mandatory to determine the virus strain. Based on the results of the examination, the doctor decides on the acceptable methods of removing the neoplasm.