Although skin warts can be removed by freezing with liquid nitrogen, warts usually grow back and require multiple treatments. However, new research suggests that ultra-short electrical impulses may be more effective in eliminating warts and other skin damage. In conjunction with previous research, scientists from Pulse Biosciences, California, recently evaluated a treatment called nanopulse stimulation (NPS). In short, it involves subjecting the lesion to a series of electrical impulses, each lasting only one nanosecond.
Electrical impulses form nanoscale holes in damaged cells through which sodium, potassium and calcium ions can enter. This, in turn, disrupts the flow of those ions of the same type inside and outside the cell, eventually leading to cell death.
In one test of the process, the scientists treated 174 patients with seborrheic keratin in a single treatment of less than a minute. After a few weeks, more than 82% of the warts peeled off. However, since collagen and fibrin, which make up healthy skin, are not affected by NPS, the skin exposed below the lesion site does not leave a scar.
In another trial, it was found that an NPS treatment could remove 99% of the facial sebum glands within 60 days. Eighteen lesions require a second treatment, usually due to missed targets during initial treatment. When NPS was used to treat 23 warts that were resistant to liquid nitrogen treatment, the “vast majority” of these warts died and fell off within 60 days.
Lead scientist Dr Richard Nuccitelli said: “NPS technology has been shown to be very effective in preserving noncellular components of the dermis while removing many types of cytopathic skin lesions. Proper energy can eliminate scars with short treatment times and very high efficacy. “
A paper on the study was recently published in the journal Bioelectricity.