Warts are benign skin growths caused by the human papilloma virus. Warts occur most commonly in children. Most will heal spontaneously over an unpredictable period of time (months to years).
Treatments for warts range from over-the-counter salicylic acid preparations (drops, gels, pads, bandages) and freezing applications, to in-office procedures utilizing liquid nitrogen, electrosurgery, application of topical acids, and rarely, excision. In some cases, a prescription cream called imiquimod can be used. Wart treatment can be less than satisfactory and recurrences are common.