A cracked heel is caused by dry skin that can worsen when thick calluses are present. Cracked heel is often referred to as heel fissures and if these fissures are deep enough they can be extremely tender on weight-bearing. Infection can result if the fissures begin to bleed. Symptoms are often made worse by open shoes as the skin can dehydrate easily.
Causes of cracked heel
Many people are prone to dry skin and this is often the common cause
for cracks to appear on the heel. Thick dry skin (known as callus)
around the heel is prone to cracking when pressure is increased (for
example when walking or standing for long periods on hard surfaces).
Factors that can cause cracked heel include:
Symptoms of cracked heel
The common symptoms of cracked heel include:
Diagnosis of cracked heel
If you are suffering pain and discomfort from cracked heels then in the
first instance you should visit your GP who will make a physical
examination of the affected area. They may also ask about your choice
of footwear, your working environment and lifestyle choices (smoking,
If necessary, the GP may refer you to a footcare specialist (known as a podiatrist) who will perform further tests to find the cause of the problem.