Oral Zinc for Treatment of Warts
Plantar warts are always a challenge for a clinician, and recently, taking zinc orally has been suggested as an adjunct whilst undergoing wart treatment.
The first study on the effectiveness of oral zinc was published in 2002, in the British Journal of Dermatology (BJD). It was based on 80 participants, all with plane, common and plantar warts. Half were given oral zinc, and the other half, a glucose pill. This study showed a clear effectiveness, with 86% in the zinc group being cured, compared with 0% in the placebo group.
An average human body contains around 2-4g of zinc. Only 5% of this is in the skin, with the remainder being in the muscle and bone. The element is ingested and absorbed through the intestine and secreted by the kidneys. The recommended daily intake is around 10mg in males and around 7mg in females, with around one third of the world being deficient in zinc.
Studies show that a zinc deficiency can adversely affect the immune system, as well as the function of cytotoxic T lymphocytes which are also used to wart clearance.
It is worth noting that taking zinc can cause mainly gastro-intestinal side effects, such as nausea, vomiting and pain. It does appear taking a simple zinc supplement can be an effective way of aiding wart relief, with little to lose from trying.
How do Warts Spread Around the House?
There is little known about how warts are transmitted. They are caused by the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV), which make up 86% of warts.
HPV1 is the most common subtype in younger patients, under the age of 10. An even more curious finding is that 46% of patients, with warts, and nearly 43% of their family members carry the HPV on their foreheads.
The HPV virus can survive about a week on hard surfaces, so this suggests thorough cleaning of bathmats, kitchen towels etc can help stop the spread of some types of HPV. However, it is worth noting that the virus is only eliminated at 100 degrees centigrade, meaning an awful lot of boil washing!
Are Warts Seasonal?
Some skin conditions are seasonal, meaning they come and go along with the seasons. Conditions like psoriasis are often worse in winter or autumn, whereas some allergies can be worse in the spring and summer.
The seasonality can be affected by various environmental changes associated with the time of year, i.e. a rise or fall in temperature or changes in UV levels.
This was discussed in an article due for publication in the American Academy of Dermatology. They analysed the data collected for three different types of warts, genital warts, warts and molluscum contagiosum (MC). Genital warts, as expected really, showed no seasonality. For warts and MC there was a definite seasonal pattern, which followed two seasons over the year.
It is worth noting that some countries followed a seasonal pattern (such as UK, the USA, Japan and Canada) but other countries did not (such as Romania, Kenya, South Africa and Brazil).
It is also worth noting that the data was taken from Google and Google will only represent a person’s interest in the subject. They may have had a wart six months ago and since googled it or may have had a wart for some time and are now only just googling it.
Warts can also linger up to a year, so it also depends on when the patient noticed the wart or when they sought help for it.
Suffering from Warts?
Are you are feeling like you have tried everything but are still suffering from warts?
Do you feel like you have seen every health practitioner you can about your warts with no results?
We have a track record of diagnosing and successfully treating cases that have previously proven difficult to resolve and we’d love to help you get the problem sorted.