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Definition of Wart

Wart: A local growth of the outer layer of the skin (the epidermis) caused by a virus. The virus of warts (a papillomavirus) is transmitted by contact. The contact can be with a wart on someone else or one on oneself (autoinoculation).

Warts that occur on the hands or top of the feet are called "common warts." A wart on the sole (the plantar surface) of the foot is a plantar wart (and can be quite painful). Genital (venereal) warts are located on the genitals and are transmitted by sexual contact; they are a form of STD (sexually transmitted disease).

Warts are nothing new. The word "wart" is from Old English. As far back as the 8th century, a "wart" was, well, a wart.

The medical name for a wart is "verruca", the Latin for wart. A common wart is a "verruca vulgaris". A wart in medicine is also sometimes called by its Spanish name, "verruga".

Source: MedTerms™ Medical Dictionary
http://www.medicinenet.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=6010
Last Editorial Review: 8/28/2013

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