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Fish eye: learn how to avoid the wart that causes pain and discomfort in the feet

You’ve probably heard of “fish eye”. If you’ve never had it, maybe you remember someone who suffered from the problem, at some stage in their life, most possibly in childhood!

Fisheye is the popular name referring to a viral infection caused by the HPV virus, with the correct name of plantar wart. Similar to a callus, this type of wart often makes it difficult to walk, as there is pain when stepping on it.

Sara Bragança, a postgraduate doctor in Dermatology, member of the Brazilian Society of Aesthetic Medicine, comments that the plantar wart is characterized by an elevation of the skin. “It forms a small, rounded lesion and has one or several small black dots in the middle.”

Dermatologist Márcia Linhares explains that the location of the fish eye, on the soles of the feet, causes pain and discomfort and, when it occurs in places of pressure, such as heels, it is often confused with calluses.

“What is most characteristic is that there is a rougher central point. Warts can still be smooth and circumscribed, and less painful, when they are called clavus. There are also more superficial variants (plantar warts in mosaic) and those with penetrating growth (myrmecia)”, says Márcia.

It is worth noting that a fish eye can appear (that is, a single lesion) or several at the same time, spread across the soles of the feet.

Causes of fish eye and ways of contagion

Sara points out that everyone is subject to having fish eyes, but children are more affected due to the fact that their immune system is more vulnerable.

Marcia explains that small traumas to the skin can favor infection by the HPV virus. But it is the immunity of the person that plays a decisive role in this case. “The immunity of the affected individual is what determines whether or not he will develop the problem, that is, immunocompromised individuals have a greater chance of developing it”, she says.

The dermatologist also explains that the contagion occurs from person to person, or indirectly, for example, by contaminated objects (fomites).

It can also be said that stress facilitates the appearance of this type of wart, in addition to the use of medication, as highlighted by Sara. This is all because these factors help to cause the immune system to decrease, which promotes infection.

How to treat fish eye?

Márcia explains that there is no single treatment, as several methods have advantages and disadvantages. “One must take into account the location, age of the patient, clinical form, duration of illness, and the patient’s immunological conditions,” she says. Some examples of methods that can be used are:

  • acids;
  • Cryosurgery or electrosurgery;
  • CO2 laser;
  • Photodynamic therapy, among others.

“Therefore, only the dermatologist is qualified to define the best treatment for the plantar wart”, highlights Márcia.

Sara reinforces that medical treatments, in general, involve the use of salicylic acid, trichloroacetic acid, fuming nitric acid, cryotherapy (freezing) and laser treatment. “If these treatments are not satisfactory, surgical procedures can be performed to remove the warts,” she says.

8 simple precautions to prevent fish eye

Below you can find the main guidelines to avoid plantar warts:

  1. Do not walk barefoot, especially in changing rooms, bathrooms and areas near the pool.
  2. Dry your feet well after swimming or simply after contact with moisture.
  3. Avoid wearing shoes borrowed from other people as much as possible.
  4. Maintain a healthy diet (with fruits, vegetables, vegetables, lean proteins), which helps to strengthen the immune system and thus avoid contamination.
  5. Try to avoid stress, as it also leads to a decrease in immunity.
  6. Never take medication (regardless of type) on your own, which could help lower immunity.
  7. If you have close contact with a person who already has fisheye, recommend that they get treated.
  8. If you already have fish eye, do not poke with your hand as this can cause the virus to spread. Seek medical help as soon as possible.

It is also important that the person who already has the plantar wart is aware that, until the problem is resolved, they should not go to environments that facilitate the transmission to other people, such as swimming pools, clubs, public restrooms, etc.

Seeking a dermatologist as soon as possible is always the best way to treat the problem correctly and avoid spreading it to other people.

Tais Romanelli

Journalist graduated in 2009 (58808/SP), freelance writer since 2013, totally adept at working from home. Communicative, always full of topics to talk about and inspiration to write. Responsible at work and outside of it; dedicated to commitments and the people with whom she lives; in love with family, dogs, home, the sea, moments of tranquility and also excitement.

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