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Causes of Athlete’s Foot

Tinea pedis, more commonly known as athlete’s foot, is a common fungal infection that usually develops between the toes of one’s foot.

Despite its name, athlete’s foot is a non-discriminatory infection that can be present on the feet of both athletes and non-athletes. The fungus typically attacks the foot because when shoes are worn, the foot becomes a warm, dark and moist environment where growth can easily occur.

You may find the location of the infection living anywhere on the foot including the heel, back or top of foot, toe webs and sole. Athlete’s foot is closely related to other fungal infections such as jock itch and ringworm.

Runner with athlete’s foot

Athlete’s Foot

Symptoms, Diagnosis & Treatment


Some common symptoms of a athlete’s foot include:

  • Skin appearing dry
  • Swelling or inflammation
  • Peeling or scaly skin
  • Itching between the toes
  • Burning between the toes
  • Blisters
  • Toenails that are discolored, thick and pull away from bed of nail

How is athlete’s foot diagnosed?

The symptoms alone, as mentioned above, are enough for a medical provider to be able to determine if you are experiencing athlete’s foot. If simply looking at the infected area is not enough to determine the diagnosis, a skin test may be ordered. It is important to seek medical attention for a diagnosis as athlete’s foot is contagious.

What treatment is available?

If a medical provider from Midwest Express Clinic has deemed your infection as fungal, a treatment plan will take place. Typically, an antifungal prescription will be provided, which will either be taken by mouth or applied topically. If the provider has deemed the infection is bacterial and NOT fungal, an antibiotic such as penicillin will be prescribed.

How to Prevent Athlete’s Foot

  • Keep your feet as clean and dry as possible
  • Never re-wear socks – Always put on a fresh, clean pair
  • Always wear shoes when in public places
  • When using public shower rooms, wear sandals or flip flops while showering
  • Keep your toenails clean and clipped

We are open 8:00 am – 8:00 pm Monday-Friday and 8:00 am – 6:00 pm Saturday-Sunday. No appointment is necessary to our walk-in clinics, however virtual check-in is available to save your spot in line.


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