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Monthly Archives: March 2014

Corns and Callus

Corns and Calluses on the feet are thickened areas of skin that can become painful. They are caused by excessive pressure or rubbing(friction) on the skin. The common cause is poorly fitting shoes. A person who is qualified to diagnose and treat foot disorders (Podiatrists) can cut away corns and calluses and can also advise on footwear, shoe insoles and padding to prevent recurrences.

A Corn is a small area of skin which has become thickened due to pressure on it. A corn is roughly roundin shape. Corns press into the deeper layers of skin and can be painful.

Hard Corns commonly occur on top of the smaller toes or on the outer side of the little toe. These are the areas poorly fitted shoes tend to rub the most.

– Soft Corns sometimes form in between the toes, most commonly between the fourth and fifth toes. These are softer because the sweat between the toes keeps them moist. Soft corns can sometimes become infected if not treated.

A Callus is toughened area of skin which has become relatively thick and hard in response too repeated friction, pressure or other irritation.

What Causes corns and Calluses?

The small bones of the toes and feet are broader and lumpier near to the small joints of the toes. If there is extra rubbing (Friction) or pressure on the skin overlying a small rough area of bone, this will cause the skin to thicken. This may lead to corns or calluses forming

The common causes of rubbing and pressure are tight or poorly fitting shoes which tend to cause corns on the top of the toes and the side of the little. Also, too much walking or running which tends to cause calluses on the sole of the feet. Corns and calluses are more likely to develop if you have very prominent bony toes, thin skin, or any deformities of the toes or feet which cause the skin to rub more easily inside shoes.

What are the treatments for Corns and Calluses?

If you develop a painful corn or callus it is best to get expert advice from a person qualified to diagnose and treat foot disorders (a podiatrist). You should not cut corns yourself, especially if you are elderly or have diabetes.


Fungal Nail Infections

Fungal Nail Infections also referred to in medical terms as Onychomycosis, occurs when fungi (a kind of microorganism) infect your nails. You may first notice the infection as a white or yellow spot under the tip of your nail. Symptoms of a fungal nail infection may include brittleness, discolouration, thickening and crumbling of the nail, as well as debris under the nail itself. In some cases, the nail can detach from the nail bed.

Approximately 50% of all nail disorders are fungal infections. There are many contributing causes, including physical damage to the nail, a weekend immune system due to the conditions such as diabetes and cancer, and over exposure to water or detergents.

How to manage Fungal Nail Infections?

Treatment of a fungal nail infection can take a while to complete, and is best begin at the early stages of infection, before it has spread deeper into the nail. Fungal infections used to be difficult to treat, but new therapies can often permanently heal your nails. Your doctor will choose the best treatment for you based the type of infection and the amount of nail involved. Treatment Can rang from 3 to 18 months to completely clear up the fungal infection.

What to expect during and after treatment?

Fungal Nails are the most difficult nail condition to treat. Treatment involves reducing the thickness of the nail and using an anti-fungal medication. It is important to discuss mobility and foot care problems with your podiatrist. Your podiatrist can advise which service or professional support if the most appropriate for your needs. The podiatrist, after assessing your foot function may recommend Orthoses or insoles to help relieve foot pain and discomfort.

The appearance of your nail will improve as your nail is slowly replaced by a healthy nail. It is important to keep in mind that this process can take to 6 months for fingernails and up to 18 months for toenails. Even in successful cases, relapse is common. Therefor, your doctor may want you to return for periodic visits to evaluate the progress and outcome of your treatment.