A corn-eye is a local keratinization of the skin. It is caused by permanently high pressure or friction, as it causes, for example, too tight footwear. A deep into the skin reaching into the corneal cone can cause severe pain. Read all about the causes, treatment and prognosis of corns.
Corn eye: description
A corn (Clavus, crow’s eye, Leichdorn) is a roundish, sharply demarcated thickening of the skin. In the center of corns sits a hard, pointed corneal cone, which extends into deeper layers of the skin and causes pain in pressure.
The corn is very common. Particularly affected are women, rheumatism and diabetes patients.
Where and how do corns emerge?
Corns are caused by permanent pressure or friction on the skin. The cause may be, for example, too tight footwear or a Fußfehlstellung.
Due to the constant pressure, a callus first forms on the foot. The uppermost layers of skin thicken and mutilate, forming a protective cushion against permanent external stress. Over time, this increased keratinization (hyperkeratosis) extends into deeper layers of the skin, creating a central, horny spine.
A corn-eye on the foot – on the sole of the foot or the sides – is the most common form of Clavus. Cause are often pressure loads by a spreading or Senkfuß. Also, a corn on the toe is not uncommon, mostly caused by tight shoes. A clavus can even form on the joints or under the toenails. In very rare cases, a corn-eye develops on the finger.
Different types of corn-eye
Physicians distinguish different forms of corns, but in practice can not always be exactly separated from each other. Different types of corns may require different therapies.
- Clavus mollis (soft corn-eye): Found between very tight or deformed toes and has a soft, flat core.
- Clavus durus: A corn-eye with a hard, strongly compressed corneal core. Mostly located on the outer foot.
- Clavus subungualis: A corn-eye under the nail.
- Clavus vascular: A corn-eye containing blood vessels. That’s why it often bleeds when removed.
- Clavus neurovascular: Nervous coral and therefore very painful.
- Clavus neurofibrosum: A very large corn eye. The sole of the foot and bales are particularly affected.
- Clavus papillaris: Is indicated by a white border. In the middle under the layer of the cornea there is an accumulation of fluid, for example a bruise. Therefore, this corn is very painful.
- Clavus miliaris: Represents a peculiarity among the corns. It is a non-deep, round cornification, which occurs especially in places that are not subjected to pressure. Since there is no pain in a Clavus miliaris, it is also referred to as pseudo-chicken eye.
Corn or Wart?
Corns and warts can look alike. The experienced chiropodist or doctor recognizes the difference immediately.
Warts as well as the corn-eye develop in places exposed to heavy mechanical stress. The most common type is the plantar wart, which is usually under the cornea and contains small black spots or dots. These are dried bleeding. Unlike a corn, warts have no corneal wedge in the middle and affect only a few skin layers, so they are rather flat.
The cause of a wart is a bacterium or virus that invades cracked or injured skin. The most common trigger is human papillomavirus (HPV).
A corn-eye appears as a round, sharply demarcated corneal thickening, which – caused by the thick layer of the cornea – appears yellowish. It is about five to eight millimeters in size.
In the center of the clavus sits a thickened horn (keratin cone), which extends funnel-shaped into deeper skin layers and causes pain when pressed. A small corn-eye is initially only uncomfortable when walking; larger corns, on the other hand, can cause severe pain and limit the mobility of the affected person in such a way that it can lead to occupational disability.
The tissue can change around the thorn. Sometimes fluid accumulates (edema) or inflammation develops.
If the corneal cone presses on a joint, it can grow together with the surrounding area of the joint capsule and trigger peritoneal irritation or inflammation.
If the corn-eye cracks or is scratched, germs can get inside. These trigger suppurative processes (abscesses) or inflammation. The germs can also spread in the skin (erysipelas) or cause blood poisoning (sepsis).
Corns: causes and risk factors
A corn-eye arises when skin that is stretched over a bone is permanently exposed to high pressure or friction. The most common cause is wearing too tight shoes, Especially tight, oppressive shoes like high heels or tight hard leather shoes like pointed boots are dangerous. For this reason, women also have corns more frequently than men.
Also socksthat rub on the skin can cause a corn.
In addition to inappropriate footwear favor deformities the feet and toes the emergence of corns. Deformations such as hallux valgus, hammertoes or bony outgrowths (exostoses) put more strain on individual areas – a corneal eye forms on the foot.
Dry skin, one genetic predisposition for corneal formation and certain Metabolic diseases are also risk factors for the development of corns. Also one radiotherapy In cancer patients, according to the latest findings, the formation of corns may favor.
Especially at diabetes patients If a corn is a potential entry port for germs, it has to be treated with special care.
Corn eye: investigations and diagnosis
A doctor or experienced medical chiropodist (podiatrist) usually recognizes a corn-eye right from the start. The keratin cone can be detected with a magnifying glass.
A corn-eye against a wart must be delineated: Excessive keratinization (hyperkeratosis) can also occur with them. The very common plantar warts, however, can be distinguished from a corn-eye by the brown dots and bluish-black, strip-like deposits in their center.
Corn eye: treatment
In order to treat a corn-eye successfully and avoid a relapse (recurrence), not only the clavus itself, but also its cause must be eliminated.
There are several ways to treat a clavus:
The currently most popular treatment method is the corn patches. They have in the middle of their adhesive surface a swab, which is soaked with chemicals such as salicylic acid (keratolytics). These soften the thickened corneal layers so that they can be removed better. Corn patches are worn for three to five days. They are available in the pharmacy and drugstore. she
Especially with a corn-eye under the foot the use of corn-patches is not without danger, since they can slip easily. The acid on the plaster then penetrates into the thin, healthy skin next to the corn, where it can cause injuries and inflammation and promote infections. Special attention should be given to diabetics (very susceptible to foot infections), people with circulatory problems and those with thin, brittle or cracked and dry skin. Experts advise against self-treatment with a corn patch.
Salicyl-containing drops may be used as an alternative to the corn patches. These are used for several days according to the information given by the pharmacist or the instruction leaflet. After that, the softened cornea can usually be removed. A hot foot bath makes it easier to peel off. To protect the healthy skin, this can be covered with cream.
It is best to remove a corn-eye from a doctor, orthopedic surgeon or podiatrist. For this, the cornea is softened in a hot foot bath before the excess skin layers are removed with a suitable instrument (such as a milling cutter, scalpel). To soften the core, hydrogen peroxide is used. If the keratin cone is particularly deep, a treatment lasting several days with a corneal dissolving substance may be necessary. A particularly low-lying corn-eye is surgically removed.
After removal of the clavus, the affected area should be protected from pressure by foam rings or inserts.
Patients should never try to cut out the corn-eye themselves with knives or other equipment, as this will usually lead to injuries or serious infections.
Remove the corn
Read more about removing corns in the article Remove Corns.
In order to permanently remove a corn-eye, its cause must also be eliminated. You can do a lot for yourself: In the future, avoid wearing too tight, abrasive footwear. During treatment, the site may be surrounded by small foam rings (corns rings) and thus relieved of pressure. This makes sense in the first time after surgery. Silicone or foam inserts in the shoe, cotton socks or shoes made of soft materials can also provide relief.
Regular washing and creaming of the skin are also important, as this keeps the skin healthy and resistant.
If a foot deformity is the cause of corns, orthopedic insoles, orthopedic shoes or other orthopedic aids can help. In some cases, a foot malposition is eliminated by surgery. Whether such an intervention makes sense or whether orthopedic insoles are sufficient, decides the orthopedist.
Corns in children
Children’s corns should be handled with particular care. Corn plasters are not recommended here, because children’s skin is still very sensitive and plaster often slip. It is best if corns in children are removed by the doctor. Afterwards, the child should only wear well-fitting shoes.
Corn eye: disease course and prognosis
Each corn-eye can be completely removed. The sooner a corn-eye is detected and treated, the better and faster the cure goes. Scarcely removing a corn-eye with a knife can leave scars behind.
Especially with nerve damage caused by diabetes mellitus (diabetic neuropathy), patients may experience no pain. Especially in such cases, a corn borer can bring serious complications because the problem is recognized too late or underestimated. It may form connecting passages between the skin and an organ (fistulas) or an ulcer (ulcer). Infections can cause tissue on the foot to die (diabetic gangrene). Diabetics should therefore take good care of their feet and show any change to their doctor or medical chiropodist. The sooner one corn treated, the sooner serious consequences can be avoided!