Table of Contents
- Athlete's foot facts
- What is athlete's foot?
- What are the symptoms and signs of athlete's foot?
- What does athlete's foot look like?
- Is athlete's foot contagious?
- What else causes foot rashes?
- What is the treatment for athlete's foot?
- What home remedies are available for athlete's foot?
- How can I treat athlete's foot in pregnancy?
- When should I seek medical care?
- What are possible complications of athlete's foot?
- What kind of doctor treats athlete's foot?
- How can I prevent future athlete's foot infections?
Quick GuideFungus Among Us: What to Know About Fungal Infections in Pictures
Is athlete's foot contagious?
If athlete's foot is caused by a fungus, it is potentially contagious. Some people do not develop infection of the skin after exposure to the fungus. The exact cause of resistance or susceptibility to fungal infections is frequently unknown.
What else causes foot rashes?
There are many possible causes of foot rashes. Additional causes include irritant or contact dermatitis, allergic rashes from shoes or other creams, dyshidrotic eczema (skin allergy rash), psoriasis, yeast infections, and bacterial infections. Since they can be visually indistinguishable, it is important for your doctor to do his best to identify the precise cause. Since fungal infections are potentially curable, it is important not to miss this diagnosis.
Your physician may perform a simple test called a potassium hydroxide (KOH) preparation for microscopic fungal examination in the office or laboratory. This test can be used to confirm the presence of a fungal infection. This test is performed by using a microscope to examine small flakes of skin from the rash. Many dermatologists perform this test in their office with results available within minutes. Rarely, a small piece of skin may be removed and sent for biopsy to help confirm the diagnosis.
Freedberg, Irwin M., et al. Fitzpatrick's Dermatology in General Medicine. 5th ed. United States: McGraw-Hill Professional, 1999.
Purim, Kátia Sheylla Malta, and Neiva Leite. "Sports-related dermatoses among road runners in Southern Brazil." An Bras Dermatol 89.4 (2014): 587-592.
Tlougan, B.E., Mancini, A.J., Mandell, J.A., Cohen, D.E., and Sanchez, M.R. "Skin conditions in figure skaters, ice-hockey players and speed skaters: part II - cold-induced, infectious and inflammatory dermatoses." Sports Med 41.11 Nov. 1, 2011: 967-984.