A corn is a thickening of skin due to intermittent pressure and frictional forces. The extensive thickening results in pain. Corns will be present especially on sole of foot and toes. Majority of corns are occurring due to unfit footwears. With the increasing incidence of corns and increasing incidence of its recurrence even after the surgical removal it has become a difficult clinical challenge and today is looking forward for a method that may effectively manage corns. Homoeopathy will help us to remove such corns based upon the totality of symptoms.
Corns, Proliferation, hyperkeratosis, hyperplasia, Homoeopathy
A corn is a circumscribed cone – shaped hyperkeratosis of the skin with marked thickening of stratum cornium. It is not a viral, fungal, bacterial disease. Common especially in women with a narrow foot wear which punch and compress the toe. Usually occurs over the bony prominences, toes, interdigital spaces of toes, sides of the feet along the junction of plantar and dorsal surfaces, distal ends of 4th and 5th toes. Corn consists of thickened layers of skin that the body has formed as a barrier to protect the skin and its inner layers from outside pressures.
Corn is a world-wide ailment. Disorder is common in women with narrow chappals. The part becomes inflamed and painful in patients with diabetes, mostly in moist and warm weather and with new foot wear. It can occur at any age, common even in adults.
- The exact cause is not known; All people with narrow and tight chappals do not suffer from corns. In many people it recurs even after the surgical removal and avoidance of narrow and tight chappals.
- Another theory is that often a bony spur or exostoses may be present beneath the hard and soft corns.
- Third view is that corns are true form of callus and arise from mechanical irritation caused by narrow tight chappals.
- Hard corns usually occur over the dorsa of toes and are painful. They are well circumscribed with a dry, smooth and slightly convex surface.
- Soft corn usually occurs over the interdigital spaces of toes (commonly on 4th space). They are soft, soggy and macerated so that they appear white.
- Vascular corn usually occurs on the sides of foot along the junction of plantar and dorsal surfaces (on the distal ends of 4th & 5th toes). Also known as clavus. Vascularity is presumed to be the result of repeated trauma to the corn constantly painful.
- Neuro fibrous corn is an advanced type of hard corn. There is an underlying fibrosis and hypertrophy of nerve filaments which is associated with severe spasmodic pain.
- Seed corn occur on the plantar surface of heel. They appear as multiple asymptomatic, yellowish white papules.
Diagnosis is easy because of its characteristic appearance, pain and location.
Yellowish keratosis occasionally with an inflammatory reddened base. There is a central white core. The size of this circumscribed hyperkeratosis varies from 1-2mm to 2cm in diameter. The apex of this keratosis is pointed inwards and presses upon subjacent structures. Pressure on nerves causes severe pain especially while walking. Secondary inflammatory changes occur especially in patients with diabetes mellitus and may lead to development of painful fistulae. In moist and warm weather corns can cause severe discomfort and hinder the mobility.
DIFFERENTIAL DIAGNOSIS OF CORN:
3. Calcaneal spur
4. Foreign bodies
5. Plantar fasciitis
6. Rheumatoid arthritis
- Wear soft shoes
- Advised to wear low heeled chappals
- Keep the foot in warm water for 10 to 15 minutes and scrape with pumice stone.
Homoeopathy is known for its successfully dealing with many of local diseases since its beginning. Many of non – surgical accepted therapies are found to be helpless in treatment of these cases specially because they can not prevent the recurrence of so-called local diseases and it is consequently reduced to, providing merely a palliative rather than curative treatment. Thus, people in desperation have been trying various alternative therapies.
Homoeopathy believes that tissue changes of the body are the results of the disease but they are not the actual disease. The cause of the disease actually lies inside the person and is brought by outside circumstances i.e., unfavourable environment.
According to Hahnemann, dynamic diseases cannot be caused by local disturbances alone. For example, modern textbooks says that wart is caused by human papilloma virus. Virus affects the local part and produces epithelial proliferation and wart. But we know that all of us are exposed to papilloma virus and only some among us develop wart. This shows that, particular person is susceptible to human papilloma virus. The main cause of wart therefore is within the person in his susceptibility.
This shows that wart is not a local disease, but the organism or living whole of the person undoubtedly as a major role in the development of this disease. This fact is applicable in the case of corns also. All the parts of the organism are intimately connected to form an invisible whole. So the external local ailment cannot appear itself without the participation of the living whole.
A homoeopathic remedy which has a tendency to produce corns in its proving, if it also covers the general characteristics of the person, then it cures corn. This proves that the local affection should be regarded as the inseparable part of the living whole and one of the most striking symptoms of the whole case.
Large horny places on the soles close to the toes. Corns on soles and toes. Great sensitiveness of soles when walking. Painful when walking. Aching, stitching pains in corns. Persons who are inclined to grow fat. Painful horny callosities on the sole. Old people with morning diarrhoea, suddenly become constipated or alternate diarrhoea and constipation, pulse hard and rapid. Sensitive to the cold.
Swelling of soles. Pain when walking. Profuse fetid foot sweat with burning of soles. One foot hot and other foot cold with burning of soles. Other constitutional features of lycopodium thermally hot, craving sweet, personality type of high intellectual attainments, associated GIT disturbances like distension, flatulence etc.
Corns with aching and stinging pains. Pain in the limb worse when covered. Limbs go to sleep. Indicated in painful corns with other constitutional features of sulphur like burning pins, thermally hot, craving sweet, philosophical mind etc.
Acetic acid has the power to liquify albuminous and fibrinous deposits, emaciation or oedema of feet and legs with other symptoms of acid group.
Big toe painful and swollen, heel painful on standing with other constitutional symptoms of Agaricus.
Toes and soles are sore. Sole painful when walking. Foetid foot sweats. Numbness of limbs with other constitutional symptoms of baryta carb like the mental backwardness, recurrent tonsillitis in people who take cold easily.
Cold damp feet as if damp stockings are worn, soles of feet raw. Feet feel cold and dead at night. Horny callosities on the sole with other constitutional symptoms of Cal Carb like thermally chilly, craving eggs, perspiration head profuse sour smelling perspiration. Sluggish fair, flabby people who take cold easily with swollen cervical glands.
Painful heels, restlessness with other constitutional symptoms of sepia like thermally chilly, prone to get menstrual abnormality, lean dark tall with yellow face, mentally irritable has an aversion to music, weepy, indifference to loved one, aversion to family etc.
Painful horny growths on the soles, offensive foot sweat, the growth which suppurates with other constitutional symptoms of Silicea like lean, tall, fair, delicate girls, thermally chilly, gentle, mild and yielding, very nervous, perspiration which is offensive, marked on hands and soles.
Corns, painful scars. Greasy skin. Boring, tearing and stitching pain. For the anaemic and cachectic, whether from lots of vital fluids. Worse walking and standing. Great emaciation, losing flesh while living well. Great liability to take cold. Irritability, crying from slightest cause, awkward, hasty, drops things from nervous weakness. Weeping sad mood without cause.
Painful horny places on soles of feet, very painful when walking.
1. Dermatology by Moschella & Hurley
2. Dermatology in general medicine by Fitz Patric, Eisen, Wolff Freed Burg, Austen
3. Textbook of Dermatology Rook Wilkinson Ebling
5. The Science of Homoeopathy by George Vithoulkas
6. The Principles and art of cure by Homoeopathy by HA Roberts
7. Lectures on Homoeopathic philosophy JT Kent
8. Principles and Practice of Homoeopathy by ML Dhawale
9. Materia Medica with Repertory by Boericke
10. A Dictionary of Practical Materia medica by JH Clarke.
Dr Sulabha G (Md Part I)
Dept of Organon of Medicine & Homoeopathic Philosophy
Father Muller Homoeopathic Medical College, Deralakatte, Mangalore, Karnataka