You may have a corn or callus if you notice:
- A thick, rough area of skin
- A hardened, raised bump
- Tenderness or pain under your skin
- Flaky, dry or waxy skin
Corns and calluses are not the same thing.
- Corns are smaller than calluses and have a hard center surrounded by inflamed skin. Corns tend to develop on parts of your feet that don't bear weight, such as the tops and sides of your toes and even between your toes. They can also be found in weight-bearing areas. Corns can be painful when pressed.
- Calluses are rarely painful. They usually develop on the soles of your feet, especially under the heels or balls, on your palms, or on your knees. Calluses vary in size and shape and are often larger than corns.
When to see a doctor
If a corn or callus becomes very painful or inflamed, see your doctor. If you have diabetes or poor blood flow, call your doctor before self-treating a corn or callus because even a minor injury to your foot can lead to an infected open sore (ulcer).
April 22, 2014
- Goldstein BG, et al. Overview of benign lesions of the skin. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Nov. 22, 2013.
- Calluses and corns. The Merck Manuals: The Merck Manual for Health Care Professionals. http://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/dermatologic_disorders/cornification_disorders/calluses_and_corns.html. Accessed Nov. 22, 2013.
- Corns and calluses. American Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Society. http://www.aofas.org/footcaremd/conditions/ailments-of-the-big-toe/Pages/Corns-and-Calluses.aspx. Accessed Nov. 22, 2013.