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Calluses and corns
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Common Foot Problems: Over-the-Counter Treatments and Home Care - American Family Physician
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Get Permissions. Read the Issue. Sign Up Now. Previous: Annular Lesions: Diagnosis and Treatment. Sep 1, Issue. Author disclosure: No relevant financial affiliations. B 15 A stiffening shoe insert relieves hallux rigidus pain. C 24 — 26 Topical salicylic acid and cryotherapy are equally effective treatments for plantar warts. A 35 Topical salicylic acid is at least as effective as scalpel debridement for treatment of corns. B 42 , 43 The fungicidal allylamine terbinafine Lamisil is effective in the treatment of tinea pedis, and has slightly higher cure rates and requires less time to cure than other topical over-the-counter treatments.
FIGURE 3 Lateral radiograph of the left foot showing osteoarthritic changes at the first metatarsophalangeal joint arrow that are common with hallux rigidus. The heel should fit snugly. Read the full article. Get immediate access, anytime, anywhere. Choose a single article, issue, or full-access subscription.
Earn up to 6 CME credits per issue. Purchase Access: See My Options close. Best Value! Corns often develop because of irritation caused by tight shoes. At the center of a corn is often a dense knot of skin called a core, which is located over the area of greatest friction or pressure. Firm, dry corns that form on the upper surfaces of the toes are called hard corns.
Pliable, moist corns that form between the toes are called soft corns. A corn is also a layer of dead skin, usually around the toes. It may have a dense knot of skin in the center of the hardened area. Like calluses, corns can cause:. After prolonged irritation, a brown, red, or black discoloration may develop under a large corn or callus.
This is caused by a small amount of bleeding in the space between thick and normal skin. In severe cases, the thick and normal skin may separate, exposing the area to possible infection. Simple inspection of the hands or feet is often enough to diagnose a callus or corn. Your doctor may ask about your shoes, because shoes with narrow toes are more likely to cause corns. He or she also will ask about the health of your feet and your history of other medical problems, including diabetes and circulation problems.
Some types of foot problems can change the mechanics of the foot, causing abnormal pressure on certain areas and leading to calluses. Any previous surgery or trauma to the feet may also affect the structure and alignment of foot bones, increasing the chance of developing a callus or corn. To find out whether your corns and calluses are related to foot abnormalities, your doctor will inspect your feet for:. Calluses and corns need treatment by a doctor or other clinician only if they cause pain or other problems.
Self-help treatments include:. If a callus or corn gets in the way of activity, or causes pain, there are two main ways to shrink or reduce it:. It may be wise to see a food specialist podiatrist if a callus or corn makes it hard to walk or do other activities.