The People's Perspective on Medicine

Duct Tape Treatment Cures Some Warts

Q. My husband's doctor told him to put duct tape on his foot to get rid of plantar warts. Do you just cut a small piece and place it on the wart? How long does it take?

A. The duct tape treatment for warts is quite controversial. The few studies that have been published provide contradictory results. Nevertheless, it is cheap, easy to use and some readers report surprising success. Here’s just one example:

“I had a cluster of plantar warts treated by a dermatologist. She used a liquid nitrogen spray, which was excruciatingly painful. My kidney stone was less painful. The warts persisted even after this treatment.

“Then I treated them with warm water soaks and duct tape, which I kept on all day. The warts went away and stayed away after about six weeks of treatment.”

A small piece of duct tape is placed over the wart for a week. Remove the tape, soak the wart in warm water, file it down with an emery board and put a fresh piece of duct tape on the next day. Repeat this for up to two months. More wart remedies can be found at

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    About the Author
    Joe Graedon is a pharmacologist who has dedicated his career to making drug information understandable to consumers. His best-selling book, The People’s Pharmacy, was published in 1976 and led to a syndicated newspaper column, syndicated public radio show and web site. In 2006, Long Island University awarded him an honorary doctorate as “one of the country's leading drug experts for the consumer.” .
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    I used a warm water soak, and then ruffed up the plantar wart area with a foot scrubber (looks like a small cheese grater)and then applied Tea Tree Oil. it took about 8 weeks and they were completely gone and have NEVER come back.. that was 10 yeas ago! Tea Tree Oil also works for the yellow toe nail fungus. that takes a long time if you have had the fungus a long time. but it works and the treatment is safe.

    I have suffered from warts for 2 years now. Thanks for the great tips.

    My four year old has had a wart now for several months. we have been seeing a dermatologist the entire time who has us using the acid and duct tape. we also see the dermatologist biweekly (@$25 per appointment) and she scrapes the dead skin off and applies “beetle juice” to the affected area. I was getting frustrated because it was taking so long. Well today, my daughter went to one of the indoor pools and the entire wart came off and now the new healthy skin is visible. I’ve since read several similar stories about warts coming off in the pool or of people using bleach on their foot.
    I wish I had known about the pool/chlorine sooner so that I could have had her at the pool a long time ago.

    I had an enormous plantar wart on the heel of my foot. I let it go for a long time because I read that they can go away on their own, but it got to be about 2″ in diameter. I tried the acid patches but it took almost a whole box of them to cover it. I had a dermatologist freeze it, which hurt like crazy, but it didn’t kill the wart. I finally tried the duct tape routine. My husband thought I was nuts. I wore the duct tape for about 2 months. It made my heel look like swiss cheese because the calloused skin swells and turns white from the moisture trapped by the duct tape and the black spots of the wart looked like craters in my foot. After 2 months it was summertime and I wanted to wear sandals again. The wart was still there, but I gave up planning to try again in the fall. Much to my surprise once the “swiss cheese” callous wore away, clear, pink, healthy skin grew back in it’s place.
    The duct tape had worked, it just took a lot longer to see the results because the wart was on such a thick-skinned area. My 6 year old daughter now has a wart under her toe and we’re trying duct tape. She is embarrassed to wear it, but we cover it with a bandaid. I’m not letting her wart get as big as mine did!

    Our daughter had tried everything to get rid of plantar warts on her feet. We heard about making a paste made out of Turmeric and extra light olive oil and applying it to the plantar warts and then covering them with bandaids. She did this nightly for about 5 days and within two weeks the plantar warts all turned dark and within a month they were all gone. She even had a wart on her hand that went away also. Turmeric is amazing!

    After many unsuccessful trips to the podiatrist over a two year period for removal of his plantar warts, my husband tried duct tape. This, too, didn’t work for him. What finally worked for him was swabbing the plantar warts with chlorine bleach on a q-tip.

    I have had great success with wart removal using duct tape. I would recommend it to anyone! I have had warts removed using the very painful liquid nitrogen technique. I have two small daughters (ages 4 and 6) who both developed warts and I dreaded the thought of having their warts removed this way.
    My pediatrician recommended duct tape and I’ve been a believer ever since! Both of my daughters warts were on their toes and after just a few days of using duct tape and filing the wart down with an emery board they were gone. It was virtually painless for my girls and highly effective!

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