Fungal infections of the foot are very common…
Fungal Nail Infections
This is very common and can affect individual or several toenails. Nails can become thickened and/or discoloured. Often the nail becomes difficult and tender to trim,initially it may only affect one nail and maybe secondary to a trauma or damage to that nail. Usually it is slow to develop and often people assume that it is part of the ageing process or wear and tear, eventually all nails may become infected and it can also affect nails on the other foot. During treatment we can reduce the nails to near normal thickness and provide medication in the form of drops/oil that need to be applied regularly. Further appointments are spread over a certain period in order for the nails to be reduced during the treatment phase to enable the medication to work. Treatment is usually successful with the return of healthy new nail plates which are then easy to manage once again. However, occasionally too many nails are infected or the infection does not respond to conservative methods and in this case the Podiatrist will refer the patient for some oral tablets that are available on prescription. The treatment must still be monitored closely so that medication can be stopped as soon as the infection has cleared.
Fungal Skin Infections
Tinea Pedis/ Athletes Foot This is another very common infection, often secondary to a fungal nail infection. The skin on the soles of the feet can be very dry and flaky especially around the borders of the heels. This does not improve with moisturising creams and often gets worse. Sometimes little brown blisters are present, especially under the arch of the foot. Between the toes becomes itchy and moist and often very odorous. There is often redness associated with fungal infection both between the toes and on the soles of the foot and around the borders of the heels. Advice can be given as to which cream or spray will be the most effective in treating the infection which usually clears up within a few days.