Callus and Corns

close up of corn on little toe

Callus and corns are a common reason why people visit a podiatrist. They can be quite painful and can occur on various spots on the foot. They occur on areas of the feet where there is too much pressure, so the skin lays down more and more layers to protect itself. However, this doesn’t mean that it should stick around!

What Is Callus?

Callus usually presents as a yellowish growth of skin on areas of the foot where there is increased pressure and loading on the one spot. Common places for callus to form includes the heels, the big toes and along the ball of the foot. Those who follow the Australian Open may remember in 2018, Hyeon Chung was forced to retire hurt in the semi-final against Roger Federer due to ‘blisters’. However, the blisters had formed over the top of callus on the big toe which had caused a breakdown of the skin and a wound underneath. Whilst this is an extreme presentation, it highlights the need for appropriate callus management to avoid blistering and breakdown of the skin. Callus can also form on the heels and lead to cracking and bleeding of the skin which can be very painful.


What Are Corns?

Corns also occur due to increased pressure, however they present as a conical structure of callus that can be quite deep and painful. They can happen anywhere on the feet however are most common on the toes or the ball of the foot, often due to the structure of the feet or footwear that is too tight or constricting. 

There are many different types of corns that can occur on various parts of the foot, including hard and soft corns, seed corns and vascular or neurovascular corns. 

How Can Corns and Callus be Treated?

Podiatrists are able to effectively treat and prevent callus and corn formation via a variety of methods.

We use a scalpel to debride/remove the corns and callus and often use different offloading devices such as felt padding, orthotics, silicone devices, toe props and other handy devices to redistribute pressure away from the area.

cracked heels

If you suffer from painful callus or corns, or are experiencing any foot discomfort or pain, call us on (03) 9432 2689 or book online and we’d be happy to help!


Aaron Dri