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CORNS what are they, how are they caused and how do i get rid of them?

By August 6, 2010 - 2:17pm
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HI there. I have had sore spots on the tips of my toes. One in particular was causing me a lot of pain. I went along to the pharmacy and from my description she thought they were corns. I purchased some 'corn removal' plasters and have been using these for about a week now on the one really bad toe. The skin around where the medicated plaster goes is all white and dead looking (even more unattractive then the corn) the pain has decreased but it still hurts to touch. The instructions on the box say 'repeat daily until corn is easily removed' now how do i know when it is going to be easily removed? how do i remove it? do i have corns or something else?

any feedback would be appreciated thank you.

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EmpowHER Guest

How can I tell if it's a corn or bunion?

January 29, 2019 - 3:57pm
HERWriter Guide (reply to Anonymous)

Hello Anon

According to podiatrist, Dr. David Todoroff:

A “corn” is a growth of skin which forms typically on a bony prominence as a response to abnormal pressure or friction. They are often located on the tops of the toes at the knuckles or sometimes between the toes. They can also form on the bottom or the sides of the foot wherever there is an excess amount of pressure, such as a bone protruding outward against the ground or against an ill-fitting shoe. The term “corn” is often used interchangeably with callus. Essentially, they are both caused by the same thing, but visually a corn is often smaller, rounder and deeper, and a callus is usually broader, covering a larger area.

A “bunion” is the name for the enlarged bony bump located behind the big toe at the joint where it attaches to the foot. This often protrudes out the side, but occasionally it protrudes upward.


January 30, 2019 - 10:27am
Expert HERWriter Guide Blogger

Hi Confused2010 -
A corn is a small, thickened area of skin that forms on the toes. Corns put pressure on the underlying skin against the bone, and they can be very painful.
You will need to continue your home treatment until it's no longer painful to touch the corns and when the skin is easily removed. As follow up, it will be important to take preventive measures so you don't get additional corns.

The causes of corns include:
* Wearing ill-fitting shoes
* Bunching of socks around toes
* Socks with seams that rub against the toes

Treatment of corns usually includes self-care and medication. In severe cases, minor surgery may be necessary. People with diabetes or circulatory problems should always see a medical doctor or podiatrist for treatment. Self-treatment may lead to severe infection in these individuals.

To prevent corns:
* Wear properly fitting shoes.
* Remove bunching of socks, irritating stitching from socks, or any other local irritant.
* Try using doughnut-shaped corn pads, which may relieve pressure on corns.


Applying keratin-dissolving medication (such as salicylic acid) can help dissolve calluses and corns more quickly. Apply medication carefully because it contains acid that may damage nearby healthy skin.

Minor Surgery

In severe cases, corns or calluses may need to be shaved off with a scalpel by a doctor. More extensive surgery may be recommended to correct foot deformities that cause extremely painful or debilitating corns.

Good luck to you!

August 6, 2010 - 6:26pm
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