Falknor`s needling procedure is an innovative and effective treatment for stubborn and recalcitrant verrucae (warts), which are benign types of the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) group. It is a form of soft tissue therapy, which is intended to break down the verruca and create a controlled inflammatory response, which in turn, stimulates the body’s immune system to recognise the virus and destroy it. The treatment has been around for over 45 years and is used routinely with great success by practitioners internationally.
How does it work?
Common verruca treatments, such as Cryotherapy (freezing), or chemical caustics, work by creating a thermal or chemical burn in and around the verruca. This aims to resolve the verruca by creating inflammation and swelling around the area, thereby provoking an immune system response. Dry needling is different. By disrupting each individual papilla in the verruca and creating a portal from the viral tissue to the adipose tissue, it allows the immune system to attack the lesion directly. In this way treating a single verruca can cause spontaneous remission in some or all satellite verrucas. It has been reported to be highly effective, even for longstanding lesions of ten years or more and has been successful when other treatments have failed. Dry needling is only performed once per verruca (rarely twice). It is carried out under local anaesthetic and most people report only minor soreness for a few days, similar to a bruise. A couple of days after treatment you can shower as normal without the need to keep bulky dressings dry. In fact, no dressings are required at all after 2 days, so you can continue with daily activities as normal.
What will happen on the day?
There are three stages to the operation:
- The procedure is performed under local anaesthetic to ensure the foot is completely numb before proceeding. You will be given an injection of local anaesthetic, which will make the area of the verruca numb.
- Having established that the area to be treated has been completely anaesthetised a hypodermic needle is used to repeatedly puncture the verruca. This pushes verrucae tissue from the epidermis through into the dermis and underlying adipose tissue layer.
- Once this process has been completed a simple dry dressing is applied. This must be kept dry for at least 24 hours. The anaesthetic will start to wear off in 2 to 3 hours, but do not be concerned if it takes a little longer as the effects vary from person to person. After 48 hours showering is permitted and life can continue as normal.
You will be required to attend a follow up appointment.
Is It Painful?
This procedure is performed under local anaesthetic and therefore does not hurt. There may be some slight discomfort for the first couple of days and pain relief may be taken to ease this as long as it is not aspirin based.
What Is The Advantage Of This Procedure?
There are many treatments for verrucae / warts although the results are mixed and the treatments are often painful.
One huge advantage over other treatments such as cryosurgery and caustic is that only one session of treatment is usually needed. If you have multiple lesions then still only the “mother lesion” needs to be treated as a systemic immune response is initiated.
Needling is an effective treatment, often working following the first treatment.
There are very few contra indications as needling does not destroy skin tissue but as with all procedures the outcomes are influenced by your general health and medical history.
Needling treatment is not available for persons under the age of 18