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Thursday, November 20, 2008


The day I moved to Ireland, bags packed and ready for the trip to JFK, my mother stood in the driveway with a new roll of silver duct tape in her hand. "Just take this!" she said. "You might need it."

With that in mind, I certainly wasn't surprised when Homeland Security recommended a few years back that Americans prepare for biological terrorist attacks with a stash of duct tape and plastic sheeting. Duct tape could probably stop climate change, if we could just figure out how to stick it to the sun.

But, a more pressing question: How can I keep it stuck to Josephinie??

My teeny-weeny Josephinie has a plantar wart on her foot. I took her to our lovely pediatrician this week, who referred us to a dermatologist who will almost certainly freeze it off with liquid nitrogen. Aaieee! Since I still have a gigantic scar on my foot from that same procedure, I'm thinking... NO.

My older sister, who is not a doctor, but is sort of bossy, says, "Duct tape!!" (Lucy, by the way, says "Duck tape!!") And, in fact, a 2002 Harrrrvard study found that duct tape -- stuck to your foot for six whole days -- actually works better than freezing! yay!

The problem is, first Josephine takes off her shoe. Then she yanks off her socks. And then, after giggling in delight at the sight of her silvered heel, she picks at the edges of the tape with a tiny little finger, until she can peel it off and stick it to her knee.


Blogger Meg said...

Oh NO! I'm heading to Georgetown on Monday for the SAME procedure. Not the duct tape on, the freezing-off-plantar-wart one.

You think the baby gave me the wart, or vice versa?

And I hate to mention this, but the 2002 study was retracted/debunked/negated. Duck tape is very useful, but not for warm removal. Unless it's a very loose wart, I suppose.

In good wart news, at least half of the time the wart disappears on its own.

Yep. We know all about warts in my house. We're very proud.

November 21, 2008 at 10:29 AM  
Blogger Pamela said...

Why not use one of the over the counter stuff? Or turn the heat off in the house and she'll keep her socks on

November 21, 2008 at 10:58 AM  
Blogger Mary Ellen said...

Meg! You're such a scientist!! Let me have hope... I went to some wacko at Providence Hospital. They'll treat you better at GU, I'm sure.
And Pamela! It doesn't matter! She doesn't understand cold.

November 21, 2008 at 11:38 AM  
Blogger Meg said...

I do like the fact the Fancy GU Wart-Removal Doctors also offer laser facelifts and $200/ounce face cream. That HAS to mean they're really good at removing warts, right?

November 21, 2008 at 5:20 PM  
Blogger Scoop said...

I know this sounds crazy, but I have used this remedy on my son and on myself, and it does work. Click here for details...

Just apply the banana peel to the wart at night (I used band aids to keep it in place). In the morning, discard the banana peel and don't apply it again until nighttime. It takes a few weeks, but it will get rid of the wart entirely.

November 22, 2008 at 1:51 AM  
Anonymous Cynthia said...

My mother would suggest that you calmly but firmly explain to the child that she must leave the sock and the duct tape on.

November 24, 2008 at 1:30 PM  

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