Cracked Heels and Heel Fissures

Cracked heels and heel fissures start out as dry skin and turn into a painful health problem.

They occur when the skin on the edge of the heel becomes too dry, hardens into a callus and then starts to crack.

Cracked Heels Become Fissures

These “fissures” can be difficult to heal, so it is important to catch this before the cracks appear. They can be particularly dangerous for patients with diabetes or diseases that compromise the immune systems, such as patients with cancer or HIV.

Cracked heels and heel fissures are most common among patients who have dry skin, flat feet, high arched feet, heel spurs or inactive sweat glands. 

We also see them a lot with people who walk barefoot or wear flip flops or sandals often, who live in very dry climates, or who are obese.

How To Prevent Cracked Heels
  • If the edges of your heels are dry, scaly and hardening, apply a heavy moisturizing lotion each night before bed and sleep with socks on. We recommend using a moisturizing lotion for dry and cracked heels.
  • A product called Heels So Smooth is excellent for softening the heels. They are sort of like socks except the material only covers the low ankle, heel and arch. Your toes are free to wiggle! The gel substance in the heel material works on softening your heels as you sleep.
  • You can also use a pumice stone or loofah sponge soap to gently exfoliate the callus each night before applying the lotion.Be careful not to rub so hard that it causes pain or bleeding. For this reason, we do NOT suggest using a popular product called the Ped Egg. Diabetics should take extra care with a pumice stone because some have a condition called neuropathy and they may not be able to tell the amount of pressure they are applying, which could damage the skin and lead to other complications. The natural loofah sponge soap is a gentle exfoliation option.
Treatment Options For Cracked Skin

If your feet are showing heel fissures, there are several treatment options. We can treat them with a special liquid bandage that will hold the skin together and promote healing.

In severe cases, we may trim away the callused skin (do not try this at home) or give you a prescription for a stronger softening agent. We may also recommend orthotics, heel pads or cushions to stabilize the foot and prevent the rubbing that can cause cracked heels.

If you are experiencing foot pain, call our office or make an online appointment


Staff was extremely friendly and professional. They took us back immediately and no waiting for doctor to come in. Dr Settles-Carter was amazing with my little girl. She took her time and explained every detail to my daughter. As we were leaving my little girl said Dr Settles-Carter was the best doctor ever. Coming from a 10yr old.

Bert King

It took some work, and patience, but my feet are much better now. Dr. Freels worked with me to find exercises, and more importantly, the right shoe to wear. So nice not to dread going into work, for the pain of simply walking. Despite what another review here says, they've never tried to sell me any shoes there, have always left the choice up to me.

Robert Griffith

The staff was very courteous. However, the care provided by Dr. Carter and the staff in the back was exceptional! I finally had answers for my health concerns and issues and a course or plan of treatment including the costs of the services they provide. I especially liked the hours of operation...I can see a doctor for the treatment I need without having to use my personal and sick days! Love the flexibility. Lastly, the ambiance esthetics were relaxing and beautiful.

Bonnie Ogle Taylor

The entire staff at Lexington Podiatry was very welcoming and friendly. Jill went out of her way to make sure my daughter was taken care of. We appreciate being seen so quickly (it would have taken weeks to have seen an orthopedist for her foot injury). Now, she is on the road to recovery! Great office, thanks everyone!

Team Wade 24

Had a great experience! Everyone was very nice, it was clean, the doctor took time to listen to me. She showed me my x-rays and explained them to me. I would recommend them to family and friends.

Heather Purvis

Accepted Insurance Providers

There may be providers, plans and coverage not included on this list. We will help you with navigating the options for coverage and costs. We also accept HSA, Flex accounts, Care Credit and prompt pay pricing for treatment at the clinic and surgical procedures. We do not accept Medicaid plans at this time. Visit our New Patient page for more details.