It is used for the treatment of fungal infections, such as athlete's foot . It can have a slight burning effect that goes away after a few minutes. A systematic review of the medical literature examining all treatments for ringworm and jock itch was generally critical of the quality of data available. It concluded that there was "insufficient evidence to determine if Whitfield's ointment, a widely used agent is effective".  This means the studies executed were poor, not that Whitfield's ointment is necessarily ineffective. Individual studies, for instance "Treatment of superficial mycoses in the tropics: Whitfield's ointment versus clotrimazole"  support its use as a cost-effective treament.