Shoe allergies are a form of allergic
contact dermatitis, in which the skin on the feet reacts to particular
substances found in shoes (allergens).
Common allergens in shoes include:
Shoe allergies develop over
time, as the skin on the feet is repeatedly exposed to a certain allergen;
it is not unusual to suddenly become allergic to a substance.
Symptoms of shoe allergies
With long term exposure to an allergen,
the skin can become thick, red and scaly.
Symptoms are usually found on the tops of
the foot and toes. They can also be found on the sole of the foot, the
legs, and the sides of the feet and heels. The area in-between the
toes is not usually affected. Topical
corticosteroids are often prescribed as treatment: they relieve itching
and reduce inflammation.
Shoe allergies are hard to diagnose,
as there are a number of other diagnoses that the doctor must consider (including irritant contact dermatitis,
atopic eczema/dermatitis, bacterial or fungal infections, dyshidrosis,
psoriasis, lichen planus and even allergic contact dermatitis resulting
from something other than shoes (socks, cosmetic products, etc.)).
to make the diagnosis.
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Haroon (2003), 'Common allergens in shoe
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