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KEY CLINICAL UPDATE IN WARTS

Sinecatechins (10% or 15%) is FDA approved for the treatment of anogenital warts.

Application three times daily for 16 weeks achieves clearance rates from 40% to 81%, with the 15% formulation resulting in higher efficacy.

ESSENTIALS OF DIAGNOSIS

  • Verrucous papules anywhere on the skin or mucous membranes, usually no > 1 cm in diameter.

  • Prolonged incubation period (average 2–18 months).

  • Spontaneous “cures” of common warts in 50% at 2 years.

  • “Recurrences” (new lesions) are frequent.

GENERAL CONSIDERATIONS

Warts (common, plantar, and genital [condylomata acuminata]) are caused by human papillomaviruses (HPVs). Typing of HPV lesions is not a part of standard medical evaluation except in the case of anogenital dysplasia.

CLINICAL FINDINGS

There are usually no symptoms. Tenderness on pressure occurs with plantar warts; itching occurs with anogenital warts (Figure 6–29) (eFigure 6–79). Flat warts are most evident under oblique illumination. Periungual warts may be dry, fissured, and hyperkeratotic and may resemble hangnails. Plantar warts resemble plantar corns or calluses.

Figure 6–29.

Condylomata acuminata around the clitoris, labia minor, and opening of the vagina. (Used, with permission, from Richard P. Usatine, MD, in Usatine RP, Smith MA, Mayeaux EJ Jr, Chumley HS. The Color Atlas and Synopsis of Family Medicine, 3rd ed. McGraw-Hill, 2019.)

eFigure 6–79.

Perianal condylomata acuminata. (Reproduced, with permission, from Orkin M, Maibach HI, Dahl MV [editors]. Dermatology. Originally published by Appleton & Lange. Copyright © 1991 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.)

DIFFERENTIAL DIAGNOSIS

Some warty-looking lesions are actually seborrheic keratosis, hypertrophic actinic keratoses or squamous cell carcinomas. Some genital warty lesions are condylomata lata of secondary syphilis. Molluscum contagiosum lesions are pearly with a central dell (eFigure 6–80 and eFigure 6–81). In AIDS, wart-like lesions may be caused by varicella zoster virus.

eFigure 6–80.

Molluscum contagiosum. Umbilicated shiny papules on the chest in a patient with HIV disease. (Used with permission, from Lindy Fox, MD.)

eFigure 6–81.

Waxy umbilicated papules of molluscum contagiosum are spread by wet skin-to-skin contact. (Used, with permission, from K Zipperstein, MD.)

PREVENTION

Administration of a vaccine against certain anogenital HPV types (including 6, 11, 16, 18, 31, 33, 45, 52, and 58) can prevent infection with these wart types and reduce anogenital, oropharyngeal, and cervical cancer. It is recommended for teenagers and young adults, men who have sex with men, and immunocompromised patients (see Chapters 1 and 18). There may be a role for adjuvant vaccination in HPV-infected patients.

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