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Family Foot & Ankle

What is the Difference Between Corns and Calluses?

Corns and calluses are often talked about in tandem—you rarely hear about one without the other. Both are layers of thickened skin and both are formed due to excess pressure or friction irritating sensitive areas. So, it’s not surprising that they’re often confused. Here’s the difference:

Corns are round bumps with dense, hardened cores surrounded by tender, inflamed skin. They often appear on bony, non-weight bearing areas of your foot, such as the tops and sides of toes, and are usually due to friction from ill-fitting footwear.

Calluses are built-up, thickened skin too, but while corns only have a hard core, calluses are flat and hard all the way through. They tend to form on weight-bearing areas like the forefoot or heel, but they can develop anywhere with enough friction. Calluses are much more common than corns and are usually painless.

Never attempt to cut, remove, or treat a corn or callus yourself. If you’re feeling discomfort, contact Family Foot and Ankle Center for an appointment. You can reach us at (513) 728-4800 or (859) 282-1572.

Dr. Cynthia Miller
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Dr. Cynthia Miller is a board certified podiatrist who has been established in the Cincinnati area since 2004.