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  • Writer's pictureAndrew Gardner


Updated: Aug 25, 2023

A chiropodist, also known as a podiatrist, can treat corns in several ways, depending on the severity of the condition. Here are some common treatments a chiropodist may recommend:

  1. Trimming the corn: A chiropodist may use a scalpel to carefully trim away the layers of dead skin that make up the corn. This can help reduce the size of the corn and relieve any pain or discomfort.

  2. Padding: A chiropodist may apply a protective padding around the corn to cushion it and prevent further rubbing and pressure.

  3. Orthotics: If the corn is caused by an underlying foot problem, such as an abnormal gait or foot structure, a chiropodist may recommend custom-made orthotics to correct the issue and prevent future corns.

  4. Salicylic acid: A chiropodist may apply a salicylic acid solution to the corn to help dissolve the dead skin cells and make it easier to trim or remove.

  5. Surgery: In severe cases where other treatments have not been effective, a chiropodist may recommend surgical removal of the corn.

It's important to note that attempting to remove a corn at home can be dangerous and may lead to infection or other complications. It's best to seek the advice of a qualified chiropodist for treatment of corns.

An infected corn should be treated promptly to prevent the infection from spreading or becoming more severe. Here are some steps you can take to treat an infected corn:

  1. Clean the area: Gently wash the area around the infected corn with warm water and soap to remove any dirt, debris, or bacteria.

  2. Apply a warm compress: Place a warm, damp cloth or compress over the infected corn to help reduce pain and swelling and promote healing.

  3. Apply an antibiotic ointment: Apply a small amount of antibiotic ointment to the infected corn and cover it with a bandage to help prevent further infection and promote healing.

  4. Take over-the-counter pain relievers: If the infected corn is causing pain, you may take over-the-counter pain relievers like acetaminophen or ibuprofen as directed.

  5. See a chiropodist: If the infection does not improve after a few days of home treatment, or if it appears to be spreading or becoming more severe, you should see a chiropodist or other qualified healthcare provider for further evaluation and treatment.

It's important to note that attempting to treat an infected corn at home with sharp instruments or by cutting away the infected area can be dangerous and should be avoided. Only a qualified healthcare professional should perform such procedures.

Corns, those small but often irritating patches of thickened skin on your feet, can make each step a reminder of their presence. Have you ever wondered how these tiny nuisances come to be? In this article, we'll explore the intriguing process of corn formation, shedding light on why and how these localized areas of discomfort develop on our feet.

The Genesis of a Corn

A corn forms as a result of the skin's natural response to pressure, friction, and irritation. It's a protective mechanism that might seem counterintuitive since it ends up causing discomfort in the process. Here's how it unfolds:

Step 1: Pressure and Friction

The process begins with persistent pressure and friction on a specific area of the foot. This can result from wearing ill-fitting shoes, tight footwear, or engaging in activities that involve repetitive rubbing against the skin. The continuous friction irritates the skin, triggering a protective response.

Step 2: Skin's Defense Mechanism

In response to the repetitive friction and pressure, the outer layer of the skin, known as the epidermis, reacts by thickening. The body's goal is to create a barrier that can better withstand the stressors it's being subjected to. This thickening of the skin forms the initial foundation of what will eventually become a corn.

Step 3: Dead Skin Accumulation

As the skin continues to respond to pressure and friction, it not only thickens but also accumulates layers of dead skin cells. This layering creates a concentrated patch of toughened skin that is distinct from the surrounding tissue. This is the beginning of the corn's formation.

Step 4: Central Core Development

Over time, as the layers of dead skin cells continue to accumulate, the center of the thickened patch can become more densely packed. This central core is often the most painful part of the corn, as it can put pressure on the underlying nerve endings.

Step 5: Appearance and Discomfort

As the layers of thickened skin and dead skin cells build up, the corn becomes more noticeable. It can take on a slightly raised appearance and often has a hard or waxy texture. The pressure on the underlying nerve endings can lead to discomfort, pain, or a sensation of tenderness when pressure is applied.

Preventing and Treating Corns

The best way to deal with corns is to prevent them from forming in the first place. This can be achieved by wearing well-fitting shoes that provide adequate space for your toes and minimize friction. If a corn does develop, you can try over-the-counter treatments to soften and remove the dead skin layers. However, for persistent or painful corns, it's advisable to consult a healthcare professional, such as a chiropodist, who can provide specialized care.


Understanding the process behind corn formation gives us insight into our body's remarkable ability to adapt and protect itself. While corns might be a result of our skin's natural defense mechanisms, they're also a signal that something isn't quite right. By paying attention to our footwear choices and taking steps to minimize friction and pressure, we can prevent these discomforting formations and ensure that our feet remain healthy, comfortable, and ready to take us wherever we want to go.

Purefeet offer Corn Removal in Egham, Staines and Ashford and surrounding areas

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