Lip Warts: Symptoms, Causes and Dealing Ways

Warts can occur on any place in the body. They may appear on genitals, hands or feet. The warts that are most problematic are those which occur on lips, especially because they look unsightly. Though warts usually do not cause pain; however, drinking cold or hot beverages may irritate them when all such beverages pass to reach the mouth.

Symptoms of Wart on Lip

  • These growths of skin are protruding and may be flat or cauliflower shaped, but in certain cases these warts form a mosaic like pattern on the lip.
  • Warts on lips, particularly which are shaped like cauliflower may result in pain and intolerable itching. However, itchiness is aggravated when infection begins to heal.
  • The color of warts may range from yellow to pink to light brown.
  • It is noticed that on the mouth’s corners, a single wart appears. In certain patients, cluster of warts may appear on the lip’s corners and only a single wart appears on upper lip. Larger bumps are likely to appear on lips due to severe infection by a virus.

Are Lip Warts Contagious?

This infection caused by a virus, which affects the lips is very contagious and is spread via contact with infected skin. For example, if a person scratches the infected lips with their fingers, and then they do not wash their hands and do routine daily activities, the infection is likely to spread to another person. You may also get lip wart infection by getting involved in oral sex with a partner who is already infected with the virus.

How Do You Get Warts on Your Lip?

The virus that causes the warts on your lips is known as HPV or human papillomavirus. The infection is transferred from an already infected person. You may get the infection via direct contact, such as by touching an infected person or via indirect contact, such as by handling an object touched by an infected person. Sharing a razor, lip balm or towel with an infected person is another way in which you can get wart on lip or face. Warts may also spread from other areas of your own body to your lips.

Since lips remain moist, they are more susceptible to be infected with the virus in comparison to other parts of the body. Cracked or chapped lips are even more susceptible to get the infection.

Persons whose immune systems are compromised such as with AIDS or HIV, or who are undergoing chemotherapy or who have been ill recently are more susceptible to get the infection; however, even people who are in good health can get infected with HPV and develop lip warts. You can protect yourself from contracting the infection by avoiding sharing of personal items such as washcloths, towels, lip balm, makeup and razors.

How to Get Rid of Lip Warts

In some cases, lip warts do not need any type of treatment and disappear on their own in a few days. But, it depends on the severity of the infection. The various treatment measures are discussed below:

  • Medicines: You can apply OTC ointments or creams directly on the wart on lip to remove it. Topical medicines including trichloroacetic and dichloroacetic acid can be used to remove these bumps. Yet another medicine that can be applied topically and is very successful in removing this infection is bichloroacetic acid.
  • Salicylic Acid: Healing of lip warts occurs by applying topical products that contain salicylic acid as an active ingredient. Salicylic acid disintegrates keratin, a protein which forms the outer layer of the lip wart, thereby penetrating the inner layers of wart and destroying the virus.
  • Freezing: If warts are not removed by medicines, then you can get rid of them by freezing. Usually, to freeze warts, liquid nitrogen is used. Application of chilled liquid nitrogen creates extremely cold environment around and in warts, which helps to damage the cells of the wart. This dries the wart and it finally comes off. Multiple sittings of freezing may be needed, depending on the size of warts and severity of infection.
  • Laser Therapy: Laser therapy is recommended for wartswhich do not show response to conventional therapy. Treatment using pulse dye laser vaporizes or burns them immediately. Destroying wart on lip using laser beam may cause a wound on the lip that may heal in a few weeks.
  • Surgery: People who do not want laser therapy may undergo surgery. Surgery can be done either by using electric current, referred to as electro-surgery or by cutting the lip wart. Nowadays, both the procedures are done simultaneously. First, the wart is destroyed by electro-surgery, followed by cutting it to remove it completely. The procedure must be done correctly; otherwise it may lead to scar formation.
  • Thuja: It is a homoeopathic medicine that is effective in terminating the infection. It is a constituent of many topical homeopathic ointments and creams. You can apply these topical creams under the care of a licensed homoeopathic physician. It is a proven medicine to treat warts. Causticum, nitricum acidicum and ruta are some other homeopathic medicines that can be used to treat lip warts.


You must understand that pricking lip warts is not the solution to remove them. This may lead to secondary infection and further complications. On pricking, the lip wart may result in profuse bleeding, thereby prolonging the time of recovery.

Moreover, when you are considering the use of OTC medicines, it is essential to consult a qualified dermatologist. Using these OTC products may lead to side effects including scar formation. It is recommended that you should opt for specially formulated prescription medicines due to the soft skin of the lips.

In majority of the cases, lip warts do not need any surgery and generally gets treated with conservative methods of treatment. Physicians often recommend using a warm compress on the affected area and keeping the area clean and soft.