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Foot and Leg Conditions

Achilles Tendonitis
Achilles Tendon Rupture
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Foot Care Tips
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Hagland's Deformity
Hallus Rigidus
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Pedicure Infections
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Tarsal Tunnel
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Getting along with inlaws


Pedicures are great ways to give your feet a well-deserved, pampering deep cleaning. Most women love the pampering and relaxed feeling that accompanies a pedicure. However, your pedicure can turn into a nightmare if the footbath is not cleaned properly. When footbaths aren't cleaned and disinfected properly, hair and skin can gather in the tub basin; and bacteria can grow to unusually high levels.

Pedicure Risks

If the footbath is improperly cleaned, it may contain a bacteria called mycobacterium fortuitum or other types of fungi.

Symptoms of a Mycobacterium Fortuitum Infection

Some of the most common symptoms of a mycobacterium infection are boils that usually start out looking like a spider bite but gradually grow in size, eventually producing pus.

Can a Mycobacterium Fortuitum Infection be Treated?

Yes. The infection can be treated with antibiotics and some boils will heal on their own. Treatment may require several weeks to complete. Depending on the severity, treatment may include multiple rounds of antibiotics lasting up to several months.

Tips to getting a Safe Pedicure

  • Ask the manager how often the footbaths are cleaned. The footbaths should be cleaned at least once a day. The bacteria is usually present in the filter. The filter should be removed of debris.
  • Ask the manager how the footbaths are cleaned. The footbaths should be cleaned with a bleach solution for 15 minutes.
  • Don't shave your legs 24 hours before your pedicure. A shave can create tiny nicks that allow the bacteria to enter your skin.
  • Make sure the salon sterilizes metal equipment between appointments. Some salons will allow you to bring your own metal equipment.
  • Make sure the salon has posted a current license from the Board of Barbering and Cosmetology, as well as the Board's Health and Safety poster.
  • Make sure your pedicurist has posted their license.
  • Trim only your toenails. Do not let your pedicurist cut your cuticles. Cut cuticles provide an opening to bacteria.
  • If the footbath basin looks dirty, ask your pedicurist to wash and disinfect the footbath and the metal equipment.


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