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Corns and Calluses


Corns are clearly defined, conical thickened skin with a visible central core that could hurt or may become inflamed. Callus is an area with a rough, thickened skin, less clearly defined and somewhat larger thancorns. Callus has no central core and is usually not painful. Although corns and calluses are most common on the feet, they can also occur in other places. Corns are also called corns or clavi called. Callus is called callus, keratome, poroom or tylose.



Corns and calluses caused by frequent pressure and friction on the skinor in a particular area because repeated injuries occur. In such situations, the body tries to protect the skin by an extreme thickening of the stratum corneum. The pressure, friction, or injury may be the result of influences from the body itself (intrinsic factors) or by external factors (extrinsic factors). Usually, corns and calluses due to a combination of intrinsic and extrinsic factors. Possible intrinsic factors that can cause corns and calluses are abnormally high bone parts, improper healing fractures and congenital abnormalities such as hammer  toes. Extrinsic factors that can cause calluses and corns are ill-fitting shoes and exercise.

Corns and calluses are also common in people who have the skin in acertain place overtaxed or damaged from repetive friction, for example during their work. So violinists often get calluses on the skin of the lower jaw and the clavicle and the headgear in nuns calluses on the ears cause. Wearingtight, ill-fitting shoes also contributes to the development of corns or calluses.


Corns and calluses are most common on the feet, especially on top of the ends of the metatarsals, the pastern joints and tips of the toes. Corns are clearly defined, well separated conical areas with a hard and scaly skin and a visible central core. Corns on the feet can cause pain, especially when walking or standing, and inflamed. Callus is not clearly defined area where the skin is rough and thickened and generally covers a larger area than corns. Callus has no central core and is usually not painful.

Corns come in two types, a soft and a hard version. Hard corns are the most common. They are dry, tough skin nodules usually on both sides and top of the toes occur. Soft corns are open wounds that are the result of sweat absorbed by the skin. These are usually between the toes.


The diagnosis is made on the basis of medical history, the story of the patient and the symptoms. Information on beginning, duration and development of the deviations is often important to make the correct diagnosis. Also the shoes views. Then a physical examination which includes looks at the gait and the position of the feet.

Using imaging tests, such as x-rays of the feet while standing, can be definite about any protruding bones. Using a skin biopsy can distinguish between corns and calluses and other similar disorders. In addition, corns warts are distinguished by the thickened horny skin.


The treatment of corns and calluses seeks to reduce further friction or pressure on the skin to counter and combat the symptoms. Ill-fitting shoes are replaced by soft and comfortable fitting shoes with a low heel that  especially the toes enough space. In the shoes, use can be made of soles with correct shape and size, or foam dressings. By further pressure on the affected area to prevent the pressure on a single point and evenly distribute over a wide are so healing can be promoted.

A corn can be removed by soaking feet in warm water and rubbing with pumice or the corn with a knife to cut away and remove the core. The painwill thus also disappear. In addition, special medicines called keratolytics, which affect the thickened layer of skin can  soften and loosen it. In exceptional cases, surgery is needed to correct bony abnormalities or congenital toe deformities. This is only chosen if other treatments have noeffect.  Diabetes can cause poorly healing ulcers and infections.

Corns and calluses are usually not serious and disappear completely if they are treated well and the underlying cause has been removed.

Corns and Calluses






Corns are normally found on the top of
the toes.  While the thicker calluses occur
on the sole of the foot.
Corn on the small toe
Image of a corn on the fifth digit.
Callus on the sole of the foot
Large callus on the sole of the


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