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J Dermatol. 2011 Jun;38(6):541-5. doi: 10.1111/j.1346-8138.2010.01056.x. Epub 2010 Nov 2.

Oral zinc sulfate treatment for viral warts: an open-label study.

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Department of Dermatology, School of Medicine, Pusan National University Medical Research Institute, Pusan National University, Busan, Korea.


Viral warts, which are caused by the human papilloma virus, are a common problem in dermatology. Various modalities have been used to treat warts, but none are uniformly effective or directly antiviral. Recent studies show that oral zinc sulfate could be effective in the treatment of viral warts. Thirty-one patients with multiple, non-genital viral warts were recruited in this open-label clinical study. The patients were treated with oral zinc sulfate (10 mg/kg to a maximum dose of 600 mg/day) for 2 months and followed up with assessments for the resolution of their warts and for any evidence of recurrence after treatment. Among the 31 patients, 18 patients showed low serum zinc levels (58%). Of 26 patients who completed the study (84%), 13 (50%) showed complete resolution of their warts after 2 months of treatment. Complete responders remained free of lesions at 6-month follow-up. No serious side-effects were reported apart from nausea (16%), mild gastric pain (3%) and itching sensation (3%). Oral zinc sulfate was found to be a good option in the treatment of viral warts, as it was safe and effective without important side-effects.

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