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Common warts revisited: a clinical study

Vaishnavi Gopal, Manjunath Mala Shenoy, Malcolm Pinto

Abstract: Background: Common warts are cutaneous viral infections caused by various strains of human papilloma virus (HPV). Their variants include filiform, periungual and pigmented warts. At present more than 200 different HPV genotypes have been detected and a periodic clinical analysis will reveal whether any new morphological variations have occurred.Methods: Hundred and ten patients with common warts were taken up for this study.Results: The clinical characteristics of 637 common warts in 110 patients were studied over a span of 1 and a half years. The age group ranged from 18 years to 72 years. Seventy six were males and 34 were females. Majority belonged to the age group of 18-30 years. The most common occupational group involved were students followed by housewives. The initial site of onset in 44.5% of patients was on the fingers. Eleven patients had atopic diathesis. Similar complaints in friends and family were seen in 30%. The most common sites of involvement for classical common warts were on the fingers and for filiform warts were on the head. 30% had association with other warts out of which 28.1% had palmoplantar warts.Conclusions: Common warts usually present as a cosmetic concern in most patients. Our study concluded that young male students are susceptible to acquiring them. Characteristics of warts in atopics did not differ significantly from non atopics. Regions most prone to contact and susceptible to trauma are the most common sites of inoculation i.e. fingers, scalp and face.
Keywords: Common Warts / Verruca / papillomaviruses

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