Causes, prevention and treatment for Corns.


Corns are thickening of skin that present in a plug like form over bony prominences, where there is local irritation and pressure to the skin. Corns may form on bony prominences such as  hammer toes,  or bony deformities due to arthritic changes.

This irritation over a specific area leads to increased build up of tissue resulting in corns and, similarly to calluses if this is not treated it may result in wounds and ulcers forming underneath. This can be very dangerous for patients with diabetes due to the increased risk of infection.

Causes of Corns:

  • Inappropriate footwear.
  • Abnormalities in foot structure which leads to prominent areas.
  • Abnormalities in walking pattern or movement that result in increased pressure to specific areas.

Symptoms of Corns:

  • Hard yellow plug will be visible over a bony prominence (eg. outside of little toe, ball of foot, on top or tip of clawed toes).
  • Soft corns can form in between toes and appear white and soggy.
  • Pain on direct palpations, as the hard plug pushes on your free nerve endings.
  • Red dots, as the pressure has resulted in the blood capillaries under the skin to burst.
  • Underlying wounds or tissue breakdown may be evident if not treated in a timely manner.

Treatment of Corns:

  • Removal of the corn by a podiatrist.
  • Pumice stone, foot file.
  • Moisturising cream.
  • Correct footwear.
  • Corn offloading insoles can be custom made to take pressure off the affected area and prevent re-occurrence.
  • Foot Orthoses to redistribute load and pressure to the feet and assist with optimum foot function

Well Heeled Podiatry can remove your corn for immediate pain relief and further discuss your treatment options available.

Extreme caution must be taken when using corn pads from the chemist as some of these pads will contain salicylic acid, used to soften the corn. Prolong use, or use between the toes can cause burns to the surrounding healthy tissue which may result in a wound, infection or ulcer.

Corn pads that contain salicylic acid are NOT recommended for people with diabetics, poor blood supply or loss of feeling in the feet. For professional, safe and effective removal of corns it is best to see a podiatrist.

Related Topics

Make an appointment