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What are 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 hard and soft corns.

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Hard corns

These are the most common and appears 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 develop in a similar way to hard corns. They are whitish and rubbery in texture, and appear between toes, where the skin is moist from sweat, or from inadequate drying. A registered podiatrist/chiropodist will be able to reduce the bulk of the corn, and apply astringents to cut down on sweat retention between the toes.

Other Corns

Seed 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.

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