What Is a Filiform or Digitate Wart?

A filiform wart is also called a Digitate wart or a Verruca Filiformis. Digitate warts are commonly found in parts of the body with thin skin. This is why Filiform warts are commonly found around the lips, eyes, chin and nose. This is a long wart with a visible base and a slender structure. The wart can grow quite long. This is why such warts are often referred to as ‘stalk-like’ warts or warts with a ‘finger-like’ structure. These warts have clearly-visible, individual projections that often resemble the bristles of a toothbrush.

Cause of Filiform Warts

Filiform warts are benign warts and are treatable. These warts are caused by the human papilloma virus or the HPV. This virus usually enters the skin’s surface when skin is injured or traumatized. The virus can sustain itself within the body for a long time without inducing any symptom.

Please note that it is not necessary that everybody who is carrying the HPV will suffer from Filiform warts, i.e. appearance of these warts is largely dependent on the ability of the individual immune systems to fight-off the virus. Filiform warts are largely regarded as being non-communicable, but clothes and towels of people with Filiform warts should be avoided.

Symptoms of Filiform Warts

Due to its significant protrusion, a Filiform wart often causes bleeding. This is very common among men wherein the warts are likely to get cut during shaving. Sometimes a mild degree of itching and redness might surface. Usually, these warts don’t cause any pain. These warts can spread to the nearby body sites if the affected area and surrounding tissues are repeatedly rubbed.

Prevention & Treatment of Filiform Warts

Maintaining personal hygiene is the most basic and useful precaution against viral warts. People who have a robust immune system are less likely to suffer from Digitate warts. These warts are likely to disappear after a few months without any treatment. However, there is no guarantee to this and people are known to suffer from Filiform warts for years.

People suffering from facial Filiform warts are more likely to seek immediate treatment. Treatment options include many over-the-counter, topical solutions and ointments. More comprehensive treatment options include treatment with liquid nitrogen, electro-cauterization and surgical excision, along with the use of some prescription medications.

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