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Athlete's Foot

Athlete's Foot Facts

Athlete's foot refers to a fungal skin eruption that is confined to the foot, in both athletes and nonathletes. It can occur anywhere on the foot, including the sole, toe webs, and back of the foot.

"Athlete's foot" is a commonly used popular term that can refer to any skin inflammation of the foot in an athlete. While this frequently is a result of fungal infections, although this is not the strict definition of this entity.

Athlete's Foot Causes

Dermatitis affecting the foot can be caused by contact allergens, irritants, sweat and rash (intertrigo), poorly fitting shoes, psoriasis, and interdigital bacterial toe web infections, and fungal infections.

Fungi (either yeasts or molds) cause athlete's foot.

  • These fungi can be contracted by sharing the shoes or socks of an infected person.
  • They need a warm moist environment to flourish and can be found growing on the floors of locker rooms and public showers and in swimming pools and whirlpools.
  • Athlete's foot seems to be relatively uncommon in humans who rarely wear closed shoes. It is most common is older adult males.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 6/1/2016

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Patient Comments & Reviews

The eMedicineHealth doctors ask about Athlete's Foot:

Athlete's Foot - Treatment

What was the treatment for your athlete's foot?

Athlete's Foot - Symptoms

How long did the symptoms of your athlete's foot last? Was there anything that helped with symptom relief?

Athlete's Foot - Cause

Was the cause of your athlete's foot a condition (psoriasis, fungal infection, contact allergens) or poorly fitting shoes, sharing socks and shoes, or using public shower facilities?

Treatment Overview

How you treat athlete's foot(tinea pedis) depends on its type and severity. Most cases of athlete's foot can be treated at home using an antifungal medicine to kill the fungusor slow its growth.

  • Nonprescription antifungalsusually are used first. These include terbinafine(Lamisil AT), miconazole (Micatin), clotrimazole(Lotrimin AF), and tolnaftate (Tinactin). Nonprescription antifungals are applied to the skin (topical medicines).
  • Prescription antifungals may be tried if nonprescription medicines are not successful or if you have a severe infection. Some of these medicines are topical antifungals, which are put directly on the skin. Examples include naftifine (Naftin), butenafine (Mentax), and clotrimazole. Prescription antifungals can also be taken as a pill, which are called oral antifungals. Examples of oral antifungals include terbinafine (Lamisil), itraconazole(Sporanox), and fluconazole(Diflucan).

SOURCE:
Healthwise


Read What Your Physician is Reading on Medscape

Tinea Pedis »

Tinea pedis has afflicted humanity for centuries, so it is perhaps surprising that the condition was notdescribed until Pellizzari did so in 1888.

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