Could these foot problems be serious?

2 answers | Last updated: Nov 01, 2016
A fellow caregiver asked...

I live a very healthy, extremely busy lifestyle. I walk a lot. I am always on my feet and two problems have come up:

  1. On the side of my right foot, near the arch, there is a visible lump (abcess?) yet it does not hurt. Is this serious?

  2. Generally speaking, I am very clean yet I notice that my feet always smell. Is this an indication of something for more serious?

Expert Answers

Jane Andersen, DPM, is a board-certified podiatrist in private practice in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. She provides surgical and nonsurgical foot and ankle care to all types of patients, including the geriatric population in her area. With the American Podiatric Medical Association, she has worked to educate the public on foot and ankle health.

Any lump, especially if it is new, should be examined by your podiatrist for a diagnosis. There are many possible reasons for a lump (including an abscess), some of which are serious and some of which are not. An abscess is usually serious, and often requires antibiotics.

Foot odor, also called bromhydrosis, can be caused by excessive sweating, fungus, infection or a combination of the above. For sweaty fee, soaking them in brewed, cooled tea for 20-30 minutes twice a day can be very helpful. Avoiding cotton socks and instead choosing wicking fabrics such as acrylic blends will help keep feet drier. Alternating shoes daily is helpful to allow them to dry out between uses. If you suspect a fungal infection (scaling, cracked skin) or a bacterial infection (red, swollen, warm skin) you should be seen by a podiatrist for evaluation and treatment.

Community Answers

A fellow caregiver answered...

my both feet plantar has some 4-6 unit callus or death and strict tissue.since 12 years .someties surgeon removed it but it occur again .when I had long walking ,it cause pain.this callus goes deep ,nearly up to feet bone .now,before callus comes bigger I remove it sometimes by sharp knife myself .my feet flesh is tiny . why I had this callus under my feet and what should I do? even I wear quality shoes .thank you