Three different forms of athlete's foot
There are three different forms of athlete's foot:
The interdigital form normally begins between the fourth and fifth fingers. Symptoms range from slight redness and peeling to thick, swollen, white layers of skin and deep, painful cracks (fissures). Wounds on the skin can be itchy. Another typical symptom is small blisters on the sides of the fingers. In many cases, interdigital tinea remains unidentified or untreated for a long time. If bacteria also settle on the damaged area of the skin, a bacterial superinfection occurs that can cause an unpleasant odor.
The hyperkeratotic scaly form is also known as moccasin-like athlete's foot. It begins on the sole of the foot and progressively extends along the edges of the foot until it reaches the instep. The first symptoms are a fine dry peeling and moderately or heavily inflamed skin. Then thick calluses form and painful cracks appear, especially on the heel. People with diabetes are at great risk for moccasin-like tinea, but they tend to mistake the symptoms for dry skin.
The dyshidrotic vesicular form produces small blisters that cluster on the plantar arch and on the edges of the foot. Due to the thick horny layer on the sole of the foot, the blisters do not burst immediately, but rather dry out. The characteristic symptoms of the infection are a feeling of tightness and itching.
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