Treatment of plantar verrucae using 2% sodium salicylate iontophoresis

Phys Ther. 2002 Dec;82(12):1184-91.


Background and purpose: Iontophoretic sodium salicylate treatment of plantar warts was studied.

Subjects: Twenty patients with 104 plantar verrucae were studied.

Methods: Two percent sodium salicylate solution was administered iontophoretically (22.5 mA-minute/electrode, 3 treatments at 6- to 9-day intervals). Results. Nineteen subjects were followed. Verrucae area declined in 15 subjects (78.9%) and increased in 2 subjects (10.5%). One subject (5.3%) no longer had verrucae, and 1 subject (5.3%) exhibited no change. Overall, the number of verrucae and total area decreased. Four of 6 subjects (66.6%) with initial complaints of load-bearing pain reported diminished pain following treatment. Two subjects whose verrucae's size increased reported an increase in pain at the end of the study.

Discussion and conclusion: Sodium salicylate iontophoresis appeared to compare favorably with other office-based interventions in diminishing the size of plantar warts and their associated pain. Application of iontophoresis to weight-bearing surfaces in some subjects appeared to decrease the pain and scarring associated with freezing and electrocautery and the fixation problems associated with medicated patches.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Antiviral Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Female
  • Foot Diseases / drug therapy*
  • Humans
  • Iontophoresis*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Sodium Salicylate / administration & dosage*
  • Warts / drug therapy*


  • Antiviral Agents
  • Sodium Salicylate