This might come as a shock to you, but I have warts. It all started about six-years ago when I scraped my arm on a tree branch. This opened my epidermis to pathogens that took root. They started as little bumps and then turned into big bumps, from my wrist to my elbow.
I went to my family doctor who labeled them as “those itchy bumpy things”. Case solved. I paid a couple hundred dollars and left.
However, I wasn’t completely satisfied with this detailed medical diagnosis, so I went to a dermatologist, who took three minutes to examine me and report with 60% certainty that they were warts. He pulled out a can of frozen nitrogen and in another three minutes had burned them to the core. He then charged me a few hundred dollars and sent me on my way.
Six-months later the warts were back with a vengeance. I returned to the dermatologist who was now 75% certain that they were warts. He pulled out the frozen nitrogen, his favorite tool, and really gave them a good blast. Satisfied, he charged me a few more hundreds of dollars and thanked me for coming to see him.
Six-months later the warts were back again, bigger and better than ever. I returned to the dermatologist because I like suffering pain and paying good money for no results. This time, the doctor’s confidence in his diagnosis had dropped down to 50% certainty. Rather than freezing the mysterious growths on my arm, he whipped out a scalpel, cut off a section of my flesh and sent it to a lab. He then charged me hundreds of dollars, the lab charged me hundreds of dollars, and then he sent me out the door.
Imagine my relief when his office called a few weeks later to tell me that my disfiguring scabs were “non-cancerous growths requiring no further treatment”.
Not medically trained, I asked, “What does that mean?”
The nurse scanned the pathology report, found the laymen’s section and stated, “You have warts.” I’m not sure how much that call cost me.
I’m a generous guy but this was enough. Doctor’s had proven baffled by my skin disease and so I did what was only prudent; I reverted to wearing long-sleeve shirts and pretending the bumps didn’t exist.
And then my wife bought Tea Tree Shampoo at Trader Joe’s. I’m a nut for clean hair and so I used it. As I scrubbed, the bubbles flowed down my arm covering the warts. It also got into my eyes, burning like the dickens. But after a week of personal hygiene and burning eyes, I discovered that my warts were quickly vanishing. Within a month, all but one of the warts were completely gone.
Look, I’m no herbalist but this stuff worked. I know doctor’s have their place and as Seinfeld reminds us, dermatologists save lives. However, two years of doctors visits and nearly a thousand dollars in medical bills were unable to find a solution, yet a $4 bottle of soap fixed the matter in a few short weeks.
And because of that, I’m wearing short sleeves again, returning to the public events with confidence, and oh, so very grateful.