Corns are effectively focal callous that builds up on the skin as a means of protecting the skin from injury. They usually form on the pressure areas for example under the foot on the ball or the heel where our body weight rests against the ground. Otherwise they develop on bony prominences – especially those that rub on shoes – such as the tops of the toes. Sometimes they can even develop between the toes!
Warts are viral infections of the skin that position themselves in such away as to avoid detection by the body’s normal immune response. Instead of developing only on pressure areas like corns (although a lot of them do form on pressure areas) they can develop anywhere on the foot. Often times they are undetected by the person until they form excessive callus over them from ongoing micro-friction in footwear or walking. Hence, they very much resemble and can be confused with corns.
It is very important to determine the difference between the two types of lesions because one is relatively simple to fix and may just require some specialised treatment from a podiatrist. The other however requires topical caustic or acid treatments which can be administered by over the counter products from the pharmacy or with more aggressive methods by your podiatrist.
To determine the difference between the two, trial this simple test. Squeeze the lump from the sides in a pinch type action or put pressure directly on top of the lump. If its uncomfortable when you squeeze it but not as uncomfortable when you push on it directly, there is a higher chance that you have a wart, if its uncomfortable only when you push down on the top its more likely to be corn. If its uncomfortable on both or hard to determine then its worth a consultation to confirm and treat the lump from a qualified health professional such as a podiatrist.
If you are unsure if you have a wart or a corn or want advice or treatment for the lump under your foot, get in touch with us at Riverside Podiatry. Call 02 4323 9100, book online or get in touch with us on Facebook/Instagram or email [email protected] and get it looked at by one of our expert podiatrists today!