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Can Fam Physician. 2019 May;65(5):337-338.

Duct tape for warts in children: Should nature take its course?


Question I continue to see families in my practice with complaints of having common warts. Despite trying to convince them that no therapy is needed, children and parents ask for advice and therapy. Is duct tape truly effective for common warts, and how is it applied?Answer Common warts (verruca vulgaris) are extremely common in children and are caused by the human papillomavirus. These benign lesions will resolve spontaneously and no therapy is recommended. Evidence for duct tape effectiveness is limited, but because this therapy is safe and well tolerated, parents can try it at home, as well as try using salicylic acid patches. With duct tape therapy, apply a small piece of duct tape directly on the wart once every 4 to 7 days; then remove the tape, clean the area with soap and water, and remove the dead skin using an emery board. Apply another piece of tape 12 hours later. Repeat this cycle for 4 to 6 weeks.


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