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WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
Tinea pedis, or athlete's foot, is a foot infection caused by a fungus.
- Antifungal medicine: This medicine may be given as a cream, gel, or pill. You may need a doctor's order for this medicine. Take it until it is gone, even if your feet look like they are healed.
- Take your medicine as directed. Call your healthcare provider if you think your medicine is not helping or if you have side effects. Tell him if you are allergic to any medicine. Keep a list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs you take. Include the amounts, and when and why you take them. Bring the list or the pill bottles to follow-up visits. Carry your medicine list with you in case of an emergency.
Follow up with your healthcare provider as directed:
Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.
Prevent the spread of tinea pedis:
- Keep your feet clean and dry: Wash your feet daily and dry your feet well, especially between your toes. After your feet are dry, use powder on your feet and between your toes. Wear clean cotton or wool socks each day. Put your socks on first so you do not spread the infection to other areas of your body. Wear sandals, canvas tennis shoes, or other shoes that allow air to flow to your feet. This helps keep your feet dry. Avoid plastic or rubber shoes.
- Soak your feet: If you have blisters, soak your feet in an astringent (drying) solution. Do this for 20 to 30 minutes, 2 times each day to help dry out the blisters. An astringent solution may be bought at drug or grocery stores.
- Wear shoes in public areas: Do not walk barefoot in public places. Wear shower shoes or sandals in warm, damp areas. This includes shower stalls, near swimming pools, and locker rooms. Do not share socks or shoes.
Contact your primary healthcare provider if:
- Your infection spreads or you have a rash on other parts of your body.
- Your infection is not better in 14 days or completely gone in 90 days.
- The skin on your foot or leg is red and hot.
- You have an upset stomach or are dizzy.
- You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.
Return to the emergency department if:
- You have a fever or chills.
- You have red streaks going up your leg.
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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.