Severe Athlete’s Foot

Severe Athlete’s Foot

August 8, 2023

Athlete’s foot, also known as tinea pedis, is a common fungal skin infection that can become serious for some people. Severe athlete’s foot may be caused by different strains of the fungus or a weakened immune system, due to factors like diabetes, poor foot hygiene, or undertreatment of the infection. Symptoms of severe athlete’s foot include intense itchiness, scaling, cracking between the toes, reddened or darkened skin, and a burning sensation. In severe cases, the infection can spread across the entire foot, causing dry, scaly skin, blisters, and painful ulcers. Risk factors for severe athlete’s foot include sharing footwear, walking barefoot in public areas, and having sweaty feet. People with diabetes, compromised immune systems, or who live in areas where specific fungal strains are common are also at higher risk. Treatment of severe athlete’s foot typically involves improved foot hygiene and antifungal medications. Preventive measures, such as keeping feet clean and dry, avoiding public spaces without shoes, and changing socks regularly, can help reduce the risk of infection. Untreated severe athlete’s foot can lead to complications such as bacterial infections, cellulitis, and fungal nail infections. If you are suffering from athlete’s foot, especially if it has become severe, it is strongly suggested that you make an appointment with a podiatrist for needed treatment.

Athlete’s Foot

Athlete’s foot is often an uncomfortable condition to experience. Thankfully, podiatrists specialize in treating athlete’s foot and offer the best treatment options. If you have any questions about athlete’s foot, consult with one of our podiatrists from PA Foot & Ankle Associates. Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality treatment.

What Is Athlete’s Foot?

Tinea pedis, more commonly known as athlete’s foot, is a non-serious and common fungal infection of the foot. Athlete’s foot is contagious and can be contracted by touching someone who has it or infected surfaces. The most common places contaminated by it are public showers, locker rooms, and swimming pools. Once contracted, it grows on feet that are left inside moist, dark, and warm shoes and socks.


The most effective ways to prevent athlete’s foot include:

  • Thoroughly washing and drying feet
  • Avoid going barefoot in locker rooms and public showers
  • Using shower shoes in public showers
  • Wearing socks that allow the feet to breathe
  • Changing socks and shoes frequently if you sweat a lot


Athlete’s foot initially occurs as a rash between the toes. However, if left undiagnosed, it can spread to the sides and bottom of the feet, toenails, and if touched by hand, the hands themselves. Symptoms include:

  • Redness
  • Burning
  • Itching
  • Scaly and peeling skin

Diagnosis and Treatment

Diagnosis is quick and easy. Skin samples will be taken and either viewed under a microscope or sent to a lab for testing. Sometimes, a podiatrist can diagnose it based on simply looking at it. Once confirmed, treatment options include oral and topical antifungal medications.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Allentown, Easton, Northampton, and Chew Street in Allentown, PA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Athlete’s Foot

Request An Appointment

Please fill out this form and
we will contact you about scheduling.