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Common wart in Child
See also in: External and Internal Eye,Anogenital
Other Resources UpToDate PubMed

Common wart in Child

See also in: External and Internal Eye,Anogenital
Contributors: Rajini Murthy MD, Susan Burgin MD
Other Resources UpToDate PubMed


Common warts, also known as verruca vulgaris, are caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV), most frequently HPV types 1, 2, and 4. Infection is usually at sites prone to frequent trauma such as fingers, hands, knees, and elbows, but common warts can occur on virtually any epidermal surface as well as mucosal surfaces. Warts may be pruritic, and scratching can produce a linear array of lesions via autoinoculation. Widespread, persistent lesions may be a clue to an underlying inherited or acquired immunodeficiency.

Verruca vulgaris lesions are more prevalent in children aged 4-12 years. The HPV virus is often passed between siblings and may be observed as cyclical infections.

Introduction of HPV into the anogenital area in children can be from several modes of transmission. Vertical transmission has been reported to be responsible for at least 20% of lesions. Horizontal transmission by caregivers in the first days of life is another modality of HPV contamination in newborns. There is also heteroinoculation by affected family members with common warts (verruca vulgaris) and autoinoculation from children who have a cutaneous or oral infection. Nevertheless, perianal and genital warts may be a sign of sexual abuse and must be investigated appropriately.


B07.8 – Other viral warts

57019003 – Verruca vulgaris

Look For

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Diagnostic Pearls

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Differential Diagnosis & Pitfalls

  • Clavus and calluses typically arise on the plantar surfaces of the feet and between toes. These lesions lack the punctate black dots seen in warts. Paring of a wart often better illustrates this feature.
  • Genital wart
  • Molluscum contagiosum can be differentiated by the smooth, domed surface with umbilication.
  • Enlarged sebaceous glands or Epidermoid cyst
  • Seborrheic keratosis
  • Congenital melanocytic nevus
  • Common acquired nevus
  • Nevus sebaceus
  • Keratinocytic epidermal nevus
  • Acrochordon
  • Prurigo nodularis presents as a pruritic lichenified hyperpigmented papule or nodule.

Best Tests

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Management Pearls

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Drug Reaction Data

Below is a list of drugs with literature evidence indicating an adverse association with this diagnosis. The list is continually updated through ongoing research and new medication approvals. Click on Citations to sort by number of citations or click on Medication to sort the medications alphabetically.

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Last Reviewed:01/26/2021
Last Updated:01/26/2021
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Common wart in Child
See also in: External and Internal Eye,Anogenital
A medical illustration showing key findings of Common wart : Fingers, Verrucous scaly papule, Feet, Knees, Dorsal hands
Clinical image of Common wart - imageId=885707. Click to open in gallery.  caption: 'A close-up of a verrucous plaque with overlying white scale and a similar smaller papule.'
A close-up of a verrucous plaque with overlying white scale and a similar smaller papule.
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