Foot Corns & Calluses

Preventing and Treating Foot Corns and Calluses

Corns and calluses are a common foot problem in modern America. Wearing tight uncomfortable shoes, uncomfortable heels, or wearing shoes without socks are among some of the main reasons for the development of corns and calluses. Toe deformity like hammertoes and bunions are also leading culprits in development of painful corns and callus. These sometimes-painful thickening of the skin will result from repetitive friction and shearing of the tissue, resulting in what professionals call “hyperkeratotic lesions”. The body reacts by forming abnormally thick layers of “protective” tissue.

A callus usually forms on the balls of the feet, sides of the feet, and on heels. Most calluses are mild and painless. Callus tissue helps humans build up the skin protection needed to walk barefoot on rough surfaces. In nature, walking over uneven surfaces also acts as an exfoliant, preventing the buildup of excess skin. There is a balance if skin growth and exfoliation in the normal case. But with some calluses, the skin may continue to build up without exfoliation, and the result is often pain, blistering, ulceration, and even infection.

Corns are another defense mechanism against friction and shear. These small, circular, hard growths were described as a “chicken-eye” during medieval times. Corns are most common on tops, or occasionally between the toes, at the toe joints.

Evaluation & Prevention Foot Corns & Calluses

At Harford Lower Extremity Specialists, we start by helping our Bel Air, Elkton, and Easton, Maryland patients understand the underlying cause of their painful calluses and corns. Understanding the root cause helps determine the best treatment plan. The goal is to prevent recurring issues with discomfort and pain while wearing shoes. We evaluate the shoes worn and the patient’s daily routines and recreational activities. Patients that are on their feet all day, who use a treadmill, or play golf on the weekend all experience different kinds of foot pressure. Our trained podiatrists help you choose the best footwear for each of your activities to help you alleviate friction and reduce the chance of recurring pain. Wearing the proper shoe with the right fit is one of the best ways to reduce pressure on the areas of your foot that are most likely to develop painful calluses and corns.

Sometimes our team will recommend pads in certain areas of your shoes, or applied to the foot. We also evaluate how custom orthotics or pre-fabricated arch support devices will help balance pressure on your feet. The goal of our podiatrists is to keep all of our patients as active and pain-free as possible.

Foot Doctors Treat Painful Calluses and Corns

While prevention is a big part of our approach, we also treat foot issues immediately to reduce pain. While some patients try Do-It-Yourself treatments, removing calluses and corns at home can make the area more painful, can cause infection, and is especially risky for people with diabetes or circulatory issues.

To stay safe, prevent infections, and reduce the chance of additional issues, always consult a Doctor of Podiatric Medicine (D.P.M.) before trying to eliminate calluses or corns at home. Even seemingly mild treatments, such as a callus scraper or sandpaper, may result in dangerous lacerations. Drug-store corn removers often contain acid, which can result in chemical burns, ulcers, and infections, especially for people with diabetes and compromised immune systems.

Foot Corn Removal & Callus Treatment

At Harford Lower Extremity Specialists, we have the tools and the expertise to safely reduce or remove calluses and corns. We understand the special risks people with diabetes and circulatory issues face and tailor our treatments in ways that protect the health of the patient while also providing immediate relief. We’ll also make sure our patients understand how to relieve foot pressure in ways that prevent calluses and corns from recurring. Contact HLES at 410-836-0131 or click the Schedule An Appointment button below.