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Feeling sore between toes. Looking for home treatment

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Emergency Medicine Specialist
Practicing since : 2006
Answered : 300 Questions
I have a painful opened sore between my little toe and the next toe. The sore sits XXXXXXX between my toes and is white in color except where it appears to be opened. I have pain that is shooting up on top of my foot and to the two toes next in line. Because of how my toes are shaped, the sore is difficult to get to and to keep dry. Tonight I am experiencing more pain than usual in the area. I'm just wondering if there is anything that I can do for a home treatment. I am not diabetic and there are no other sores or rashes on either of my feet or toes. I do not wear tight shoes, but I do wear socks a lot around my home. I change them often throughout the day. I have had the sore for about a year and pain from it for about 6 months. During that time it has stayed around the same size.
Posted Tue, 19 Feb 2013 in Infections
Answered by Dr. Sheeba Stephen 3 hours later
Hello and welcome to Healthcare Magic. Thanks for your query.

From the description of your symptoms, it appears that suffering from a fungal intertrigo (yeast infection). This is typically a persistent and nagging infection which occurs in skin folds or difficult to access crevices in the body.

I would suggest the following measures:

- Wash the area (with the toes retracted) two to three times daily with diluted potassium permanganate solution or diluted boric acid solution. (Potassium permanganate crystals or boric acid powder should be available with your local chemist. Add not more than 1 to 2 pinches for a litre of water)

- You can also soak your foot for 10 minutes a day salt water (not advisable if the would is raw).

- You can use tee tree oil to soothe and relieve the pain, if the wound is raw.

- You can take an anti-inflammatory / analgesic medication like ibuprofen (Advil) or paracetamol (Tylenol) to reduce the pain and inflammation.

- If you can get an anti-fungal cream over the counter, like miconazole (Micoderm) or clotrimazole (Candid), apply it twice a day over the affected areas.

- Dampness and poor ventilation are the most important causes for non-healing. So, keep the surrounding areas always clean, sweat-free and dry. Avoid wearing socks or if necessary, wear loose cotton socks.

- Avoid using any strongly perfumed soap or shower gels or any cosmetic creams / lotions, since they can often cause skin irritation and worsening of the inflammation.

- In your diet, include more of yogurt and curds, since they are known to inhibit fungal infections. Alternatively, you can also take a probiotic supplement, like lactobacillus supplement.

Dr. Sheeba Stephen
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