Dry Needling for Verruca
Verruca Pedis (verruca) is a very common foot complaint. Though usually painless, they can often be uncomfortable if on an area of pressure.
Verrucae pedis is a skin infection caused by The Human Papilloma Virus. The virus invades the outermost layer of the skin (epidermis) and causes visible lesions to appear on the skin. Verruca usually appear as a plaque of hard skin, with an irregular border and can have black dots (blood vessels) scattered throughout. They can be on the soles of the feet or on the toes. It is important to remember that the virus is contagious and can be spread.
Our immune system is far more active in the deeper layers of our skin (dermis), which explains why some verrucae lesions are so resilient. Between these two layers is the dermo-epidermal junction and it is this that is traumatised during dry needling.
Dry needling is a minor surgical procedure, which involves the use of a fine needle to puncture the verruca lesion and dermo epidermal junction multiple times under local anesthesia. The goal is to implant infected cells into the dermis thus stimulating an immune response and, therefore; destruction of the virus.
One huge advantage over other treatments such as cryosurgery and caustic is that only one session of treatment is usually needed. If you have multiple lesions then still only the “mother lesion” needs to be treated as a systemic immune response is initiated. There is no evidence that suggests using this technique can spread the virus further.
Recent studies have shown Verruca Dry Needling has a success rate of approximately 65%. As with all verruca treatments results cannot be guaranteed.
There are very few contraindications as needling does not destroy skin tissue but as with all procedures the outcomes are influenced by your general health and medical history.
We also offer Cryosurgery and acid treatment. This is a less invasive option to dry needling. The aim of the treatment is the same; triggering the immune system to recognize and destroy the virus. Success rates are much lower; around 15%.
Needling has been around for 40 years. It was first described in a medical journal in America in 1969 and is used routinely on that side of the Atlantic. It has only recently crossed the water, which is why very few Podiatrists offer it.
If you have a verruca you had given up on ever getting rid of, don’t waste any more money at the chemist! Call for an assessment appointment now and sort it out once and for all!
Please contact the clinic for an appointment and we can go through treatment options in more detail.
What is dry needling?
Dry needling is a procedure where the verruca / wart is punctured with a small needle to cause bleeding and stimulate the body’s immune system to resolve the problem, see video below:
Is it painful?
This procedure is performed under local anesthetic and therefore does not hurt. A recent study found that patients experienced minimal post operative pain.
What is the advantage of this procedure?
There are many treatments for a verruca / wart although the results are mixed and the treatments are often painful. In addition, they often require several consultations.
Dry needling is an effective treatment, often working following the first treatment. Patients can remove the dressing the next day and continue as normal.
Is this suitable for multiple / large verrucae/ warts?
The treatment is appropriate for all verrucae / warts although often the largest is targeted in the first instance?
If it does not work, what are my options?
The treatment can be repeated but any of the other common treatments can still be provided.
Will I need to take a pain killer afterwards?
These are generally not necessary and anti-inflammatories should be avoided as there is a theoretical chance this could reduce the body’s immune response to the treatment.
How successful is the treatment?
Until recently, there was very little information on success rates. However, a recent paper has demonstrated:
31 patients (69%) had complete resolution
3 patients had reduced size and pain
11 showed no improvement
There were no post operative infections or scarring
Only mild symptoms were reported – bruising, slight discomfort
The paper is available at: Dry Needling
"Dear Mr Hussain,
Following my appointment with you I just wanted to say a big thank you for your continued patience and support in FINALLY getting rid of my verruca which has been giving you and me both nightmares for some time now!
I can’t express how happy I am that I may finally be able to walk pain free and happily bare my feet to all with pride.
You really have worked miracles with your perseverance and treatment where others have previously failed. (albeit was stubborn)
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