Intended for healthcare professionals

Rapid response to:


PapersLocal treatments for cutaneous warts: systematic reviewCommentary: Systematic reviewers face challenges from varied study designs

BMJ 2002; 325 doi: (Published 31 August 2002) Cite this as: BMJ 2002;325:461

Rapid Response:

Don't neglect fluorouracil

I think that Gibbs et al are a bit harsh about the benefits of
fluorouracil in the treatment of warts when they describe it as 'more of
historical interest'. As far as I can tell, the trials they identified
seemed mostly positive about its effects.

I can certainly testify personally to its efficacy. I once endured a
large and painful plantar wart for about 5 years, which resisted copious
amounts of salicylic acid and many excruciatingly painful sessions of
cryotherapy. It disappeared, never to return, within a month of starting
fluorouracil treatment.

I entirely accept the authors conclusions that salicylic acid is a
good treatment for warts, but what about the warts that don't respond to
it? Surely fluorouracil is a reasonable option in those cases?

Competing interests: No competing interests

07 September 2002
Adam Jacobs
Dianthus Medical Limited