Does Duct Tape Fix Everything? On Treatment for Warts
Treatments for verrucas, or warts, vary but are commonly comprised of topical therapies of salicylic acid or cryotherapy. Often verrucas are as stubborn as they are unwanted and patients struggle to find a method that will take care of the problem completely. Occlusive duct tape therapy has been proposed as a first line alternative option.
Duct Tape Therapy? What Does this Involve?
The occlusive therapy typically involves a duct tape covering for seven consecutive days followed by a twelve-hour night of rest. It is then recommended that the cycle be repeated for 6-8 weeks.
How Does it Work?
It is believed that by causing irritation, the duct tape will stimulate the patients’ immune system as it does with cryotherapy.
What does the Research Show?
A recent search for primary and secondary sources on the plausibility of the therapy showed three randomized controlled trials conducted in the last 10 years. In those trials, 15% of patients reported local irritation, with one side effect being erythema. Two trials showed complete resolution in 2 months and reduction in diameter. It showed a 97.5% chance of a beneficial result and a CI only touching 1.00.
Resolution is significant enough to warrant therapy recommendation, especially where other therapies have failed for the patient. However, this recommendation should come with the acknowledgement of some inconclusive evidence.
[image by woodleywonderworks]