Athlete's Foot

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Athlete's Foot
Athlete's Foot

Video: Athlete's Foot

Отличия серверных жестких дисков от десктопных
Video: Athlete’s Foot (Tinea Pedis)| Causes, Risk Factors, Signs & Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatment 2023, January

Athlete's foot

Athlete's foot (tinea pedis) is a disease of the soles of the feet and / or the spaces between the toes caused by dermatophytes (especially Trichophyton rubrum and Trichophyton interdigitale) that does not heal by itself. Athlete's foot is one of the most common human infections in Central Europe. One in ten, and with increasing age, one in three adults is affected.


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  • How is athlete's foot transmitted?
  • How you can prevent athlete's foot infections
  • ">What are the symptoms?


  • How is the diagnosis made?
  • How is athlete's foot treated?
  • Whom can I ask?
  • How are the costs going to be covered?


How is athlete's foot transmitted?

The transmission takes place from person to person with the interposition of objects such as shoes, stockings, but also floors. There is a possibility of infection wherever barefoot scales of skin can get on the floor and on the feet of other people. For example, dermatophytes can often be detected on the floor of company or public showers and baths. Micro-injuries and tight footwear also play a major role. Therefore, athlete's foot is particularly common in professions or sports where regular showering is common in large communal areas and whose feet are exposed to certain injuries.

Furthermore, individual factors play an important role in the development of athlete's foot, e.g.

  • family disposition,
  • Foot malpositions,
  • bad footwear (pressure points, warm and humid climate in air-impermeable shoes),
  • Use of public bathing facilities,
  • older age (over 50 years),
  • Injuries,
  • peripheral neuropathy,
  • Diabetes mellitus,
  • Immune deficiency such as HIV / AIDS,
  • Circulatory disorders.

How you can prevent athlete's foot infections

The following measures are recommended to reduce the risk of infection:

  • Wear bathing shoes in public baths (also in the shower),
  • Washing feet with soap after each time in a public bath,
  • intensive drying of the feet including the spaces between the toes after every bath and shower,
  • do not go barefoot on carpets in hotel rooms,
  • wear suitable, air-permeable stockings and socks,
  • wear closed shoes as short as possible to avoid sweaty feet,
  • Disinfection of objects infected with fungi such as shoes with a fungus-active agent,
  • Wash stockings at 60 degrees Celsius,
  • Avoid tight shoes.

What are the symptoms?

There are three types of athlete's foot.

  • Interdigital form: usually starts between toes four and five. The symptoms vary from slight reddening and scaling to white, swollen, thick layers of skin and deep, painful cracks in the skin (fissures). There are often small vesicles on the side surfaces of the toes. This form of foot mycosis can persist for years - often undetected - if left untreated, or it can spread to the entire foot. An accompanying bacterial flora is responsible for the often unpleasant odor.
  • Squamous-hyperkeratotic form: begins with fine, dry scales on more or less severely inflamed skin on the soles of the feet and slowly spreads to the edges and back of the feet ("moccasin mycosis"). In the further course, a thick callus (hyperkeratosis) and painful cracks in the skin can develop, especially on the particularly stressed heels. Foot mycoses are very common in diabetics, especially moccasin tinea, which is often not recognized and is often interpreted as dry skin.
  • Vesicular-dyshidrotic form: is expressed by vesicles that burst in the area of ​​the arch and edges of the foot and dry out due to the thick horny layer on the soles of the feet. Subjectively, there is a feeling of tension and itching.

How is the diagnosis made?

Athlete's foot is diagnosed based on the typical skin changes and symptoms. To identify the fungus, a sample of the infected skin is taken and examined in the laboratory. In some cases, a so-called Woodlight lamp, which emits UV light of a certain wavelength, is used for diagnosis. In individual cases, a tissue removal (biopsy) followed by a histological examination or further diagnostic procedures are useful.

How is athlete's foot treated?

Athlete's foot does not usually heal by itself, but must be treated with so-called antimycotics. Usually improvement occurs after a few days. Nevertheless, depending on the type of athlete's foot and its severity, a treatment period of at least two weeks is required.

In addition to drug treatment (local and possibly systemic), avoiding the causes is important. In particular, the skin should be kept dry in the affected areas. Furthermore, in places with an increased risk of infection, such as swimming pools etc., good hygiene and, for example, the wearing of bathing shoes must be ensured.

Whom can I ask?

If a fungal disease is suspected, a dermatologist should be consulted as soon as possible. A referral to a fungal outpatient clinic may be necessary for an exact diagnosis. The earlier a fungal disease is diagnosed and treated, the faster and better the healing will take place. However, waiting or self-treatment can make the fungal disease worse. You can find doctors in your area under Search for a doctor.

How are the costs going to be covered?

All necessary and appropriate measures for diagnosis and therapy are taken over by the health insurance carriers. Your doctor or the outpatient clinic will generally settle accounts directly with your health insurance provider. However, you may have to pay a deductible with certain health insurance providers (BVAEB, SVS, SVS, BVAEB). However, you can also use a doctor of your choice (ie doctor without a health insurance contract) or a private outpatient clinic.

For more information, see Costs and Deductibles.

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