Callus and Corns

Callus and corns are both hard thickened areas of skin. They form because of an excess of pressure or friction to a particular area of the foot.

Calluses are usually found on the heel, ball of the foot and along the borders of toes and forefoot. The skin is yellow in colour and can either be hard and smooth or rough and cracked. They develop due to excessive pressure from poorly fitted footwear or by a biomechanical problem (the way we walk).

Corns are similar to calluses but they develop into a cone shape with a central core they can cause pain if they are touching or close to a nerve. they are usually found on the bony parts of the foot on top of toe joints and under the bony parts of the ball of the foot.

There are different types of corns:-

  • Hard - found on the toes and under the foot, can be very small only 1mm across to the size of a small pea.
  • Soft corns - found between the toes and are usually soft and slightly rubbery due to the sweaty moist conditions between the toes.
  • Seed corns - very small hard corns found in clusters or singular and usually not sore and can be easily removed.
  • Vascular corns - can be very sore and will bleed if cut these can be troublesome.
  • Fibrous corns - are long standing corns and have involved deeper areas of the skin and can be quite difficult to remove.

Nail Problems

Discoloured nails may be due to a fungal infection of the nail and/or the nail bed.

The nail can become thick and very crumbly making it very unsightly.  It can also possibly cause discomfort and difficulty in cutting and maintain nails.

Fungal nails may be an indication of other problems with the body such as diabetes, psoriasis, immune disorders and other fungal skin conditions. Discoloured nails may be caused by other conditions other than a fungal infection.


Verrucae are also called plantar warts and frequently occur on the soles of the feet or around the toes. They are triggered by the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV).

Highly transmittable through direct person-to-person contact. Verrucae are harmless but can be uncomfortable and painful if they develop on a weight bearing part of the foot. 

In addition, hard skin (callus) can form over the top of the verruca increasing the pain in this area.

The most common appearance is that of a small cauliflower type growth on the soles of your feet with tiny black dots. 

Heel pain

80% of heel pain is associated with a condition called plantar fasciitis.

The plantar fascia is a fibrous band that stretches from the heel to the toes along the arch of your foot. It helps to give structure to the foot and helps with correct foot function. 10% of people will at some time suffer from plantar fasciitis with the most common age effecting 40-80 year olds.

  • Do you have pain in the heel 1st thing in the morning?
  • Does the pain reduce with moderate movement but then worsening through out the day especially with long periods of standing or walking?
  • Do you have tight calf and leg muscles?
  • Reduced movement in the ankles?
  • Over weight?
  • Flat feet?

If you don't treat or releave the pain it can cause secondary pain in the knees, hip and back as you try to change your walking style to stop the pain in your foot.

Forefoot pain

Forefoot pain can be caused by a number of ailments:- corns and calluses, fractures or very commonly a Morton's neuroma. This is a thickening of the nerve between the metatarsal bones in the forefoot just behind the toes.

  • The pain is usually felt between the middle toes. Either between toes 3 and 4 or 2 and 3.
  • It can also be felt between toes 4 and 5 as well as 1 and 2.
  • Morton's neuroma is more commonly found in women than men.
  • Most commonly effects people over the age of 45.
  • The pain is worse when wearing tight shoes with a heel.
  • The pain can feel like a pebble in the shoes or a burning tingling sensation radiating up to the toes.