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Do you think you have a corn?

Why getting your foot checked could be the most important thing you do today

How often do you spot a lump, bump or sore spot on your foot and you're not sure what it is? Do you think, Oh I'll just see if that settles? Or do you book in with a podiatrist to find out exactly what it is?

We frequently see patients who think, or have been told by another health professional, that they have, for example, a corn, or a verruca, and when we meet them it turns out to be something else entirely. Michelle even once had a patient present with an ingrowing toenail but had been advised elsewhere it was a verruca! They look very different.

The best thing to do if you find any lesion or have any concerns about your feet, is to book in with a HCPC registered podiatrist for a professional assessment. That way you can be advised about the most appropriate treatment to resolve that problem as effectively and quickly as possible.

One of our lovely patients presented in clinic last year for ongoing help with foot care.

They had fairly recently undergone orthopaedic surgery following an accident and were only just starting to get out and about again.

As part of their rehab the patient was undergoing frequent physiotherapy. At their most recent appointment the eagle-eyed physio had pointed out a lesion under the patients right foot and suggested they make a podiatry appointment as it looked like they possibly had a corn. The patient had not been aware of any issues in the area.

Corns can be very painful and cause you to limp or alter your gait. Whilst undergoing rehab maintaining good foot health is vital, as foot pain will only slow the patient down and delay the rehabilitation process.

After removal of footwear and socks Michelle set about searching for said corn. But look what she found instead....

a small cut on the sole of a foot
Previously undetected lesion on foot

A cut in the skin which raised suspicions...

On further investigation it was discovered that there was a foreign body present and a

splinter of glass was extracted from the wound, much to the surprise of the patient.

a small glass splinter pictured next to a scalpel handle for size comparison
Glass splinter found in a cut on a foot

Luckily there were no signs of infection. The wound was cleansed with hypochlorous solution, an antimicrobial spray we use very frequently in clinic. A dressing was then applied to the wound, which went on to heal without incident within a few days.

The patient was extremely lucky the physio had noticed this lesion as it had prompted them to call us for an appointment a bit sooner than they would have usually. If left, this lesion could have become infected and ulcerated, and would have seriously affected his rehab and foot health!

Splinters or foreign bodies, are something often seen in clinic by podiatrists. Bits of glass, splinters of wood, pieces of wire, even dog hairs can easily penetrate the skin of the sole of the foot if trodden on unknowingly by patients. Sometimes patients will feel an injury happen but not be able to see where the issue is. On other occasions the patient, a relative or the podiatrist will notice a mark or shadow in the skin and realise there is a splinter. A patient may also present with an infection, abscess or inclusion cyst as a result of a foreign body.

Do you think you have a corn?

So if you have noticed a lump on your foot, have a painful spot, or think you can see something under the skin, give us a call as soon as possible, it could be a splinter rather than a corn! Whatever the suspicion, all lesions should be assessed sooner rather than later. Don't delay, come and see us.

Contact us today on 0161 427 4937 or by emailing

Many thanks go to our lovely patient who allowed us to share the details and photos of this interesting case study



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