is a localised area of hard, horny skin which forms as a result of constant rubbing or
pressure. A calluses are larger versions.
What to look for
an area of hard, thick
skin, which may look a yellow colour
Corns between the toes can
A callus is an area of
hard, dead skin up to an inch wide on the soles of the feet, the palms of the hands, or
any area subject to friction.
Corns and calluses are formed
to protect the skin against friction or pressure. Corns generally occur on the toes and
balls of the feet, while calluses can develop on hands, feet, or anywhere there is
These are likely to develop
whenever there is pressure or excessive wear on the skin. Most are caused by ill-fitting
shoes. If your child develops a callus that has no clear source of pressure, it may be
hereditary. Feet spend most of their time in a closed, moist environment ideal for
breeding bacteria; staph infections can start when bacteria enter corns through breaks in
the skin and cause the infected corn to give off fluid or pus.
Calluses are usually easy to
When the friction or excess
pressure is gone, the callus or corn will usually disappear as well. Always wear shoes
that fit you well, and usually leather will mould with the foot better than synthetic
You can buy over the counter
ointments and topically applied corn plasters, however be careful of the healthy tissue
surrounding the corn. Oral antibiotics are available if your corn is infected.
It is a good idea to scrap
the excess dead skin with a sharp scraper or scalpel knife. Do this until you can see the
soft skin underneath. Be very careful not to scrape away too much skin as this can cause
bleeding or introduce infection.