What Causes Hyperkeratosis?

The body is predisposed to protect itself against many forms of perils. For instance, incessant rubbing, irritation, pressure, infection and friction of the skin results in Hyperkeratosis. Hyperkeratosis is a condition that is characterized by the thickening of the outer skin as a way of protecting the inner skin tissue from harm. Hyperkeratosis can also be brought about by radiation through overexposure to sunlight as well as chemical inflammation. However, there are various types of Hyperkeratosis thus the causes differ depending on the skin infection one has. Here is a look at the some examples and their causes.

  • Warts – These are thick bumpy growths that appear on parts of the body that are mostly in contact with people who are already infected or surfaces that are contaminated. Warts are caused by the Human Papillomavirus (HPV). The body parts likely to have this type of Hyperkeratosis are usually the hands and feet. Plantar warts usually occur on the soles of the feet and most people get these after walking barefoot in a pool area or gym. Plantar warts are also caused by sharing shoes with someone who is already infected.
  • Calluses and corns – People who wear tight shoes are likely to suffer from corns on their toes due to continued friction and pressure. Calluses are common at the bottom of the foot and the hands as well. Even though they are usually not harmful, calluses and corns can be quite painful in some cases.
  • Lichen planus – This may occur in the inside of the mouth or on the skin. If this type of Hyperkeratosis arises in the mouth, there is presence of a white patch. This is mostly caused by friction which can be brought on by dentures. It however may also be a response triggered by an aberrant occurrence in the immune system.
  • Eczema – This is a form of skin irritation usually caused by an allergic reaction to certain chemicals. Also referred to as dermatitis, this inflammatory skin condition can cause a lot of discomfort due to itching. If the condition worsens it may lead to variation in skin complexion and hair loss.
  • Actinic keratosis – This is caused by radiation. Excess exposure to the sun results in tiny, flat, coarse blemishes that may even lead to skin cancer.


Even though most cases of Hyperkeratosis are caused by some thing, there are people who get the aforementioned skin conditions through genetics. In such instances, the individual will get the skin infection shortly after they are born.


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Hyperkeratosis Symptoms

What Does Hyperkeratosis Look Like?


Hyperkeratosis Symptoms

This is a rare inherited skin disease characterized by blistering, redness, scaling and thickening of the skin at birth. The outer layer contains tough protective protein called keratin. This thickening is always part of the skins protection against rubbing, pressure and other form of skin irritation.

The causes of hyperkeratosis include:

Chronic inflammation of the skin

It’s one of the symptoms of hyperkeratosis. It can be triggered by allergies, irritating chemicals and other causes. This causes the skin to develop;

Blisters – It is an amount of fluid trapped underneath the skin between layers.

Red Skin – These are red spots or patches on the skin.

Scaly skin -This is a tough skin formed and is has scales.

Thickened skin -This is toughening of skin or scaling of the skin

Corns and Calluses

They develop particularly in areas exposed to regular friction and pressure. In response to this, dead cells accumulate and harden. Calluses mainly form on soles of the feet and palms of the hand. They could be a painful experience and may need medical help.

Plantar Warts

They are small bumps on the skin normally caused by a virus known as human papilloma virus (HPV) infection.  Plantar warts grow on the soles of the feet. HPV is infectious and is transmitted through direct contact with infected skin. Typically this will be through shaking hands or touching someone who is already affected. Walking on gym floor barefooted or wearing someone else shoe who is infected is a recipe for you being infected as well.

Lichen Planus

This condition may appear as a lacy white patch on the inside of the mouth or itchy violet color or scaly patches elsewhere on the skin.

Actinic Keratoses

They are flat red rough sandpaper like spots or patches on the skin. They may be caused by excessive exposure to radiation usually ultraviolet radiation from the sun. Not treated early may potentially develop into skin cancer.


Seborrheic Keratoses

They are small non cancerous skin growths tan or black in color. You may find them on your face, arms, legs or trunks

Heat Intolerance

This is a lesser symptom of Hyperkeratosis. It’s a condition where a person is intolerant to changes of temperature especially heat.

Other symptoms may be hereditary in nature and may appear as a widespread thick plate like scaling of the skin. These symptoms begin either at childhood or during birth.



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Pigmented Hyperkeratosis

What Does Hyperkeratosis Look Like?





Pigmented Hyperkeratosis

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Hyperkeratotic keratosis is a rather common skin condition. It is due to the continual production and accumulation of skin cells on the sin surface. The skin should normally digest the accumulated cells. But the skin condition prevents this possibility. It is also caused when keratin accumulates on the skin. Keratin is the protein responsible for […]

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April 1, 2012

Hyperkeratosis is a skin condition that is commonly associated with people over forty years of age. This condition has over a long time been associated with cancerous cells. The truth is that hyperkeratosis has no any relation with cancer. The symptoms are warty features on the skin. These features are so ugly that once manifested […]

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Hyperkeratosis is characterized by localized thickening of the dermis and is caused by many things. Some common causes are excessive friction to the skin, constant pressure, harmful radiation, and infection. It occurs as a result of accumulation of excess keratin on certain parts of the skin. Hyperkeratosis is quite common on the hands since most […]

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Hyperkeratosis can’t be said to be uncommon. Many individuals worldwide are suffering from it. This situation is due to the consistent exposure of the human skin to the sun. When you have your skin exposed to the sun for a very long period of time, you are exposing your skin to the excessive production of […]

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Hyperkeratosis appears as bumps on the skin. These bumps can either appear singly or in clusters. They can make the skin look rather ugly. This is one of the reasons many individuals would rather want to get rid of it. It is in your best interest to get rid of this skin condition the moment […]

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Hyperkeratosis Treatment on YouTube

March 1, 2012

Hyperkeratosis is a common skin condition that affects a majority of the population. It is therefore taken to be a part of growing. When hyperkeratosis appears at an earlier age they make one uncomfortable and cause cosmetic problems. Hyperkeratosis can be treated using different treatments available. Hyperkeratosis treatment varies depending on the kind of Keratosis. […]

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