Warts are highly contagious growths caused by certain types of human papillomavirus (HPV) 4. There are various types of warts, which differ in appearance, response to treatment and usual location in the body. Don't try to treat warts around the eye by yourself. See a doctor to determine the diagnosis and appropriate treatment.
Types of Warts Near the Eye
Most warts around the eye are filiform warts 4. These are a special type of wart located primarily on the face or neck. They are the same color as the surrounding skin and can become quite tall. They typically consist of more than one fingerlike projection arising from the top of a stalk. Filiform warts tend to grow quickly but are usually easy to treat 4.
Why You Should See a Doctor
Eye Infection in HPV
Most treatments for warts are harmful if they inadvertently get into the eye. This is one reason why you should not attempt to treat warts in this area on your own.
Another reason is that most methods to treat warts can cause scarring, especially if they are not used properly. Most people prefer to avoid scarring on their face. Because of this, the American Academy of Dermatology recommends that people with a wart anywhere on the face be treated by a dermatologist 24.
Seeing a doctor is also important to make sure the growth is really a wart and not another problem, such as skin cancer.
- Most treatments for warts are harmful if they inadvertently get into the eye.
- Another reason is that most methods to treat warts can cause scarring, especially if they are not used properly.
Treatments Your Doctor May Recommend
There are several treatment options for removing a wart around the eye. All have advantages and disadvantages and your doctor will help decide which is best for you. Although most methods will successfully remove the wart, none will reliably kill all of the virus. The wart may therefore return in the future.
One option is cryotherapy, which involves applying extremely cold liquid nitrogen to the wart. This freezes and destroys the wart. The opposite — applying extreme heat to the wart — is another treatment option. Laser therapy and electrosurgery are the two main methods of applying heat to warts. Cryotherapy and heat treatments often require more than one session to completely remove a wart.
Minor surgery — removing the wart with small surgical instruments — will successfully remove the wart in just one session. However, it may be more likely to produce scarring than other methods.
Reviewed and revised by Mary D. Daley, M.D.
- There are several treatment options for removing a wart around the eye.
- One option is cryotherapy, which involves applying extremely cold liquid nitrogen to the wart.
Eye Infection in HPV
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- Merck Manual Professional Version: Warts (Veruucae Vulgaris)
- American Academy of Dermatology: Warts
- Clinical Medicine and Research: An Armamentarium of Wart Treatments
- Warts.org: Filiform Warts
- InformedHealth.org. Warts: Overview. Cologne, Germany: Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care (IQWiG). Updated November 7, 2019.
- InformedHealth.org. What are the treatment options for warts? Cologne, Germany: Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care (IQWiG). Updated November 7, 2019.
- Al Aboud AM, Nigam PK. Wart (Plantar, Verruca Vulgaris, Verrucae). Treasure Island, FL: StatPearls Publishing. Updated September 27, 2019.
- Liu J, Li H, Yang F, et al. Epidemiology and Clinical Profile of Cutaneous Warts in Chinese College Students: A Cross-Sectional and Follow-Up Study. Sci Rep. 2018;8(1):15450. doi:10.1038/s41598-018-33511-x
- Goldman RD. Duct tape for warts in children: Should nature take its course?. Can Fam Physician. 2019;65(5):337-338.
- Cockayne S, Hewitt C, Hicks K, et al. Cryotherapy versus salicylic acid for the treatment of plantar warts (verrucae): a randomised controlled trial. BMJ. 2011;342:d3271. doi:10.1136/bmj.d3271
- Baker DA, Ferris DG, Martens MG, et al. Imiquimod 3.75% cream applied daily to treat anogenital warts: combined results from women in two randomized, placebo-controlled studies. Infect Dis Obstet Gynecol. 2011;2011:806105. doi:10.1155/2011/806105
- Gaston A, Garry RF. Topical vitamin A treatment of recalcitrant common warts. Virol J. 2012;9:21. doi:10.1186/1743-422X-9-21
- Walczuk I, Eertmans F, Rossel B, et al. Efficacy and safety of three cryotherapy devices for wart treatment: A randomized, controlled, investigator-blinded, comparative study. Dermatol Ther (Heidelb). 2018;8(2):203-16. doi:10.1007/s13555-017-0210-5
- Dalimunthe DA, Siregar R, Tanjung C. Comparative clinical efficacy between electrodesiccation with curettage and application of 80% phenol solution in treatment of common warts. Open Access Maced J Med Sci. 2018;6(2):326-9. doi:10.3889/oamjms.2018.074
- Chauhan PS, Mahajan VK, Mehta KS, Rawat R, Sharma V. The efficacy and safety of intralesional immunotherapy with measles, mumps, rubella virus vaccine for the treatment of common warts in adults. Indian Dermatol Online J. 2019;10(1):19-26. doi:10.4103/idoj.IDOJ_142_18
- Nofal A, Elkot R, Nofal E, Mazen M. Combination therapy versus monotherapy in the treatment of recalcitrant warts: A clinical and immunological study. J Cosmet Dermatol. 2018;2018;12848. doi:10.1111/jocd.12848
- Raghukumar S, Ravikumar BC, Vinay KN, et al. Intralesional vitamin D injection in the treatment of recalcitrant warts: A novel proposition. J Cutan Med Surg. 2017;21(4):320-4. doi:10.1177/1203475417704180
Dr. Robert Petros has been working at the Yerevan State Medical University Department of Epidemiology and Infectious Diseases since 2009. He has had experience with thousands of patients and done a considerable amount of work in epidemic prevention on the government level.