Types of Corns

When we walk or stand, our body weight is carried first on the heel and then on the ball of the foot, where the skin is thicker to withstand the pressure.  When this pressure becomes intense, growths, in the form of corns and callus, may appear.

Corns always occur over a bony prominence, such as a joint.

There are five different types of corns.  The two most common are hand and soft corns.

Hard Corns

These are the most common and appear as small, concentrated areas of hard skin up to the size of a small pea, usually within a wider area of thickened skin or callous, and can be symptoms of feet or toes not functioning properly.

Soft Corns

These are tiny corns that tend to occur either singly or in clusters on the bottom of the foot.  They are usually painless.

Vascular Corns

These corns will bleed profusely if they are cut and can be very painful.

Fibrous corns

These arise from corns that have been present for a long time.  They appear to be more firmly attached to the deeper tissues than any other corn.  They may also be painful.

Don’t cut corns yourself, especially if you are elderly or diabetic, and don’t use corn plasters or paints which can burn the healthy tissue around the corns.  Home remedies, like lambswool around toes, are potentially dangerous.  Commercially available “cures” should be used only following professional advice.

You could use a pumice stone to remove the thickened skin a little at a time, or relieve pressure between the toes with a foam wedge, but if you are unsure of what to do, or need special attention, consult a registered podiatrist/chiropodist who will be able to remove corns painlessly, apply padding or insoles to relieve pressure, or fit corrective appliances for long term relief.

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