Tinea Corporis – Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

Definition

Tinea cruris is the name used for infection of the groin with a dermatophyte fungus. In another word tinea corporis is also known as “ringworm”. Typically it appears as a large, red, ring shaped or circular rash on the skin. Ringworm can occur anywhere on the skin and it commonly itches. It is most often seen in adult men.

Most people will develop some resistance to skin fungus after being infected. Others appear to have a susceptibility to fungal infections. Sometime the it will run in the family. Up to 20 percent of the population has one of these infections at any given moment.

Causes

Tinea infections result from several different fungi. The fungus that causes ringworm is spread from one person to another. Sometimes this happens through direct contact. An infected person may touch someone who does not have the disease and directly transfer the fungus to the second person. Transmission can also occur directly through contact with infected lesions or indirectly through contact with contaminated articles such as shoes, towels or shower stalls.

Symptoms

One or more sections of the scalp will show hair loss or give a stubbly appearance. The skin will be slightly scaly but with little or no irritation. In addition to these symptoms, ringworm may be present on the face or other parts of the body.

The common symptoms which seen on most of the infected person is-

  • Itching of the affected area
  • Skin lesion, rash
    • On the arms, legs, face, trunk (usually exposed body areas)
    • Ring shaped
    • Borders appear scaly, distinct

Treatment

This infection should be treated with clotrimazole, which is applied a couple of times a day for about three weeks. Newer and more effective over the counter medications are available as well, for example Lamisil AT® (terbinafine HCl), applied once or twice a day for 1 to 2 weeks. This infection is mildly contagious until treatment is begun.

If there are several ringworm are present on the body then oral antifungal medications can be used. Oral medications are taken once a day for 10 days and result in a 100% clinical cure rate. The recommended oral antifungal medications are Terbinafine (Lamisil) and Itraconazole (Sporanox).

When fungus is found in the nails or on the scalp, the infection is much more difficult to eliminate. Prolonged treatment with a prescription oral anti-fungal medicine, as well as other topical medicines, is usually necessary. Scalp ringworm is a major cause of hair loss, and should be treated aggressively.

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