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Corns Follow-up

  • Author: Daniel J Hogan, MD; Chief Editor: Dirk M Elston, MD  more...
Updated: Sep 18, 2014

Further Outpatient Care

Follow-up care is important to ensure control of the hyperkeratosis because patients may require regular, repeated applications of keratolytic agents in conjunction with careful paring.

Patients with special health concerns, including diabetic patients, amputees, and elderly persons, may require more frequent follow-up visits in order to decrease the likelihood of a more catastrophic complication, particularly secondary bacterial infection, from the initial lesion.



Deterrence and prevention includes the use of corn pads, web spacers, and properly fitting shoes (see Pathophysiology and Medical Care). Patients can treat their corns at home using a pumice stone to regularly debulk the lesion after a shower, when the skin is soft.



Complications include secondary bacterial or fungal infection in patients with diabetes or in patients with immunosuppression (see Mortality/Morbidity). With deep paring, be aware of the risk of bleeding and infection.[4]

Corns are often in close proximity to joints and bones, increasing the chances for septic arthritis or osteomyelitis to occur if left untreated.



Recurrence is common.


Patient Education

For excellent patient education resources, see eMedicineHealth's patient education article Corns and Calluses.

Contributor Information and Disclosures

Daniel J Hogan, MD Clinical Professor of Internal Medicine (Dermatology), Nova Southeastern University College of Osteopathic Medicine; Investigator, Hill Top Research, Florida Research Center

Daniel J Hogan, MD is a member of the following medical societies: Alpha Omega Alpha, American Academy of Dermatology, American Contact Dermatitis Society, Canadian Dermatology Association

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.


Amy Lynn Basile, DO, MPH Sun Coast Hospital/Largo Medical Center

Amy Lynn Basile, DO, MPH is a member of the following medical societies: American Medical Association, American Osteopathic Association, American Osteopathic College of Dermatology

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Specialty Editor Board

David F Butler, MD Section Chief of Dermatology, Central Texas Veterans Healthcare System; Professor of Dermatology, Texas A&M University College of Medicine; Founding Chair, Department of Dermatology, Scott and White Clinic

David F Butler, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Medical Association, Alpha Omega Alpha, Association of Military Dermatologists, American Academy of Dermatology, American Society for Dermatologic Surgery, American Society for MOHS Surgery, Phi Beta Kappa

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Jeffrey Meffert, MD Associate Clinical Professor of Dermatology, University of Texas School of Medicine at San Antonio

Jeffrey Meffert, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Dermatology, American Medical Association, Association of Military Dermatologists, Texas Dermatological Society

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Chief Editor

Dirk M Elston, MD Professor and Chairman, Department of Dermatology and Dermatologic Surgery, Medical University of South Carolina College of Medicine

Dirk M Elston, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Dermatology

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Additional Contributors

Richard K Scher, MD Adjunct Professor of Dermatology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine; Professor Emeritus of Dermatology, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons

Richard K Scher, MD is a member of the following medical societies: Alpha Omega Alpha, American Academy of Dermatology, American College of Physicians, American Medical Association, Association of Military Surgeons of the US, International Society for Dermatologic Surgery, Noah Worcester Dermatological Society, Society for Investigative Dermatology

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.


The authors and editors of Medscape Reference gratefully acknowledge the contributions of previous authors Ali Hendi, MD; Douglas W. Kress, MD; and Roger Patrick, MD, to the development and writing of this article.

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Hard corn on the lateral surface of fifth toe. Courtesy of James K. DeOrio, MD.
Hard corn over the proximal interphalangeal joint of second toe. Courtesy of James K. DeOrio, MD.
Calluses on the palmar surface of the hands of a body builder. Courtesy of James K. DeOrio, MD.
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