Skip to main content

Plantar warts

Plantar warts are noncancerous (benign) skin growths. They develop on the bottom of the foot and usually appear as areas of thick, tough skin similar to calluses. They can be on any part of the foot. But they cause the most discomfort when they are on a pressure point such as the heel.

The cause of plantar warts is a virus (human papillomavirus, or HPV). This virus is contagious and may be spread from:

  • Warts on another part of the body.
  • Contact with a person who has warts.
  • Contact with a warm, moist environment, where this virus can thrive.

Plantar warts are often hard to get rid of, no matter what treatment is used, and they often come back. But within a few years, warts usually go away with or without treatment. Treatment to get rid of warts may include over-the-counter and prescription medicines or minor surgery.


PeaceHealth endeavors to provide comprehensive health care information, however some topics in this database describe services and procedures not offered by our providers or within our facilities because they do not comply with, nor are they condoned by, the ethics policies of our organization.