CORNS + CALLUS | HELOMAS + HYPERKERATOSIS
Corns (Helomas) and Callus (Hyperkeratosis/ Tyloma) develop due to pressure. They can be physiological (normal) or pathological (abnormal). If an individual works with their hands all day (eg: shovelling) the natural physiological response of the body will be to build up the skin in pressure areas. This presents as a callus – if the pressure is more localized a corn may develop. These areas become pathological if left untreated or if the increased pressure is chronic. Corns and Callus are very common in the foot due to the pressure placed on the foot with every step we take. A foot that is more rigid tends to present with more callus or corns. Often a patient may complain of pain – feeling as though they are walking on something hard such as the sensation of walking on a rock.
Treatment of corns and callus involves removing the pressure – This is best done with prescription custom foot orthotics. The overlying callus and corn should always be removed. This can be done by regular debridement and filing. It is also suggested to apply emollient (skin moisturizer) to help your body slop off the dead skin cells. It is hard to completely remove a pressure area in the foot. The most effective way to offload a pressure area is through the use of custom foot orthotics. Surgery or wound care may be indicated if the callus becomes severe.
If corns and callus are left untreated it will become very painful for the patient. Often blood may form below the callus. This is known as a hematoma. If the pressure continues the skin underneath the callus may open and ulcerate. This may cause scar tissue in the area, which is more prone to callus formation – thus causing further damage. All callus should be treated and monitored frequently.
COMMON FOOT TREATMENTS