I have itchy dry skin on my toes.

I have itchy dry skin on my toes, this can become inflamed and occasionally blisters, I was told at GP surgery That this was dry skin and I should treat with moisturiser, but this has not helped. I also tried antifungal creams and antimicrobial spray. None of these treatments have worked. Can you recommend anything?

29 March 2015

I suggest that you bathe your feet twice a day in a soap substitute emollient such as Oilatum, Diprobath or Doublebase and then ensure your feet are thoroughly dry before applying a moisturiser cream or ointment.

You have not mentioned the actual moisturiser cream you have used. However, Diprobase ointment, Doublebase cream, Epaderm cream or Aveeno cream may help. You do need to continue this treatment for several months in order to see benefits.

It may be worth reviewing your footwear. Ideally leather upper shoes that fit well around the width of your feet will help as they allow good circulation in your toes. Poor circulation can cause itchy feet. If you wear trainers ensure they have leather uppers too.

If there is no improvement contact your GP for further examination.

NOTE: Just in case you wondered emollients are medical moisturisers. They are available in various forms such as soap substitutes, bath additives, sprays creams or ointments.

They help to repair damage to the skin’s natural barrier, which can often occur when the skin becomes dry and cracked. They can help to reduce redness, swelling and itching. They protect the skin from becoming irritated and from infections.
There is no right emollient for everyone. Different people benefit from different combinations of emollients and have different needs and preferences so I suggest you need to try a soap substitute or a bath additive and a cream or an ointment of your choice. Then stick to ones that suit you the best.

Answered by Health at Hand nurses. 

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