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Podoconiosis is a form of lymphoedema that occurs in tropical highland areas in genetically susceptible individuals who are exposed to irritant volcanic soils. The disease is preventable through consistent use of footwear and attention to foot hygiene; however, in endemic areas there is a strong barefoot tradition, and many cannot afford shoes. Patients with podoconiosis face significant physical disability, psychological comorbidity, reduced quality of life and experience frequent episodes of systemic illness due to acute dermatolymphangioadenitis. This review provides an overview of this important and neglected tropical skin disease and summarizes the latest research findings.

Original publication





Dermatology (Basel, Switzerland)

Publication Date





236 - 247


Dermatology Department, Brighton General Hospital, Brighton and Sussex University Hospital NHS Trust, Brighton, United Kingdom,


Humans, Elephantiasis, Genetic Predisposition to Disease, Mental Health, Cost of Illness, Shoes, Africa South of the Sahara, Central America, South America, Asia, Southeastern, Social Stigma, Neglected Diseases, Clay