The most common skin rashes that occur in the feet are fungal infection, psoriasis and eczema.
Although they have similar symptoms, the differences between all of them and treatment vary so it is important to differentiate between them.
Common Rash Types
- Fungus– Athlete’s foot as it is commonly known as, or tinea pedis is a scaly, itchy, blistering rash that can appear on the bottoms of your feet and in between the toes. While rare, it may present with an odor. Athlete’s foot is usually caused by excessive sweating along with the dark, warm and moist environment that we keep our feet in daily.Fungal infections can often be treated with an antifungal cream as well as an oral antifungal medication in extreme cases. Wearing bamboo or wool socks may help control the excess moisture to your feet which may predispose you to getting athletes foot.
- Eczema– Eczema is usually presents as a dry patchy rash that appears on the tops of the foot. This rash can be very itchy. The rash can be so itchy that scratching it will often cause it to bleed. It is most common in young babies and children. Eczema is usually caused by either an allergic reaction to irritants such as detergents or dyes from clothing or may be hereditary.While most often a chronic condition, it usually requires long term treatment with topical steroids and a moisturizing regimen.
- Psoriasis– this is a chronic skin condition that often affects a person’s elbows, feet, and front of legs. Psoriasis presents as thick, grayish white plaques of skin. While the exact cause of psoriasis is not known, it is autoimmune in nature.Several factors may triggers psoriasis such as stress, skin infections and tobacco use. Pitting of the toenails may also be seen. While topical steroids may be used, oral medications such as anti-rheumatic drugs are usually the required treatment, as psoriasis as a system issue. While rare, psoriasis may also cause arthritic changes to the feet, which may be severe if left untreated.
While it may be very tempting to self-diagnose and treat skin rashes yourself, it is best to be evaluated by a health care professional. Utilizing the wrong treatment or a delay in treatment may prolong the symptoms and/or make the rash worse. Sometimes a biopsy of the skin rash may be needed to confirm the diagnosis.
Call 859-264-1141 or make an online appointment for an evaluation.