How to File or Scrape Tinea Pedis

Doctors refer to it as tinea pedis, but most people refer to this irritating foot infection by its common name–athlete’s foot. Although fungal skin infections in the tinea family, such as athlete’s foot, ringworm and jock itch, are closely akin they do not all respond the same to specific medications. That is why it is important to make a proper diagnosis. Althlete’s foot sometimes requires a sample specimen to be examined under a microscope. Samples are obtained by a medical professional taking a scraping of the infected area from the patient.

Examine your self for signs and symptoms of athlete’s foot. One of the first signs you might notice may be persistent foot odor. Athlete’s foot can cause cracks or blisters which may break open and leave raw, tender skin. The infected area typically burns and itches, it may look red or scaly and the skin may peel.

Apply an over the counter anti-fungal ointment that is specifically marketed for the treatment of athlete’s foot to the infected area as directed. Minor cases of athlete’s foot respond well to medications containing miconazole, clotrimazole, or terbinafine. Keep your feet dry, wear shoes made of breathable materials and apply medicated foot powder to prevent the fungus from coming back.

Contact your health care provider if over the counter treatment doesn’t work, or if the infection spreads. Your physician will conduct a physical examination of the infected area and may need to take a scraping from the area. This will be done by running a sharp instrument lightly across an infected part of the skin. Loose skin particles will be captured in a sterile container, then examined under a microscope to provide a definitive diagnosis.

Follow your health care provider’s instructions regarding treatment. This may include the application of a topical anti-fungal medication in addition to a multi-week course of treatment with a prescription anti-fungal oral medication such as terbinafine, itraconazole, or fluconazole.

Doctors refer to it as tinea pedis