This episode delves into the highest quality trial ever done on the treatment for warts. This randomised controlled trial published in the CMAJ compared cryotherapy with liquid nitrogen to salicylic acid wart creams to doing nothing.
250 patients were recruited in primary care and follows up for 13 weeks, The primary outcome was complete resolution of the wart by that time.
The bottom line was that for plantar warts there was no difference between cryotherapy, salicylic acid cream or doing nothing in terms of cure rates or patient satisfaction at 13 weeks. For other warts, there is a 35% absolute increase in cure with using cryotherapy over salicylic acid and a 46% absolute increase in patient satisfaction. The prognosis is worse for warts that have been there for longer than 6 months, and for plantar warts, the prognosis is worse if the patient is 12 years old or older.
In this episode we also discuss the importance of allocation concealment.
music by Polyrhythmics, song El Fuego