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Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews

Oral treatments for fungal infections of the skin of the foot.

Overview of attention for article published in this source, April 2002
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Oral treatments for fungal infections of the skin of the foot.
Published by
John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, April 2002
DOI 10.1002/14651858.cd003584
Pubmed ID

Bell-Syer, Sally EM, Hart, Rachel, Crawford, Fay, Torgerson, David J, Tyrrell, Wendy, Russell, Ian


About 15% of the population have fungal infections of the feet (tinea pedis or athlete's foot). Whilst there are many clinical presentations of tinea pedis the most common are between the toes (interdigital) and on the soles, heels and sides of the foot (plantar) which is known as moccasin foot. Once acquired the infection can spread to other sites including the nails, which can be a source of reinfection. Oral therapy is usually used for chronic conditions or when topical treatment has failed. To assess the effects and costs of oral treatments for fungal infections of the skin of the foot (tinea pedis). Randomised controlled trials were identified from MEDLINE, EMBASE and CINAHL from the beginning of these databases to January 2000. We also searched the Cochrane Controlled trials Register (Cochrane Library issue 1, 2000) the Science Citation Index, BIOSIS, CAB-Health, Health star and Economic databases. Bibliographies were searched, podiatry journals hand searched and the pharmaceutical industry and schools of podiatry contacted. Randomised controlled trials including participants who have a clinically diagnosed tinea pedis, confirmed by microscopy and growth of dermatophytes in culture. Study selection was done by two independent reviewers. Methodological quality assessment and data collection was also assessed by two independent reviewers. Twelve trials, involving 700 participants, were included. The two trials comparing terbinafine and griseofulvin produced a pooled risk difference of 52% (95% confidence intervals 33% to 71%) in favour of terbinafine's ability to cure infection. No significant difference was detected between terbinafine and itraconazole; fluconazole and either itraconazole and ketoconazole; or between griseofulvin and ketoconazole, although the trials were generally small. Two trials showed that terbinafine and itraconazole were effective compared with placebo. Adverse effects were reported for all drugs, with gastrointestinal effects most commonly reported. The evidence suggests that terbinafine is more effective than griseofulvin and that terbinafine and itraconazole are more effective than no treatment.

Mendeley readers

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 30 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
United States 1 3%
Nigeria 1 3%
Unknown 28 93%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Student > Bachelor 5 17%
Researcher 4 13%
Other 3 10%
Student > Postgraduate 3 10%
Student > Master 3 10%
Other 3 10%
Unknown 9 30%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Medicine and Dentistry 10 33%
Agricultural and Biological Sciences 3 10%
Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology 2 7%
Nursing and Health Professions 1 3%
Immunology and Microbiology 1 3%
Other 3 10%
Unknown 10 33%