Fungal skin infections, known as one of the most common skin infection, are caused by different types of fungi. Fungal infections can be a common culprit of itchy skin.
Fungi invade and grow in dead keratin, a protein that is essential to make up skin, hair, and nails. According to the type of fungus is involved, fungal infections are divided into different groups. Fungi usually choose their homes in moist parts of the body. Such places can be cited as between the toes, in the genital area, and under the breasts. There are two common fungal skin infections, which are caused by yeasts and dermatophytes. The most common yeast is Candida or Malassezia furfur, while Epidermophyton, Microsporum, and Trichophyton are popular types of dermatophytes. Many such fungi live only in the topmost layer of the epidermis (stratum corneum) and they are not able to penetrate deeper. Statistics show that obese people tend to get fungal infections because they have excessive skin folds. This is particularly true in the case of the skin within a skinfold becomes irritated and broken down (intertrigo). People with diabetes are more likely to be more susceptible to fungal infections as well.
It is important to notice that fungal infections on one area of the body can cause rashes on other parts of the body which are not infected. For example, a fungal infection on the foot can lead to an itchy, bumpy rash on the fingers. This is mainly because these eruptions (dermatophytids, or identity or id reactions) are allergic reactions to the fungus. Some people think that they are result from touching the infected area, but it is not.
Doctors or dermatologist can diagnosis a fungal infection when you are suffering a red, irritated, or scaly rash in one of the commonly affected areas of the body. Apart from screening, they can confirm the diagnosis of a fungal skin infection by taking out a small amount of skin and examining it under a microscope or placing it in a culture medium where the specific fungus can grow and be identified.
Antifungal drugs. One of the most effective treatments for fungal infections is using antifungal drugs. It can be treated completely with antifungal drugs. Topical drugs, which refer antifungal drugs that are applied directly to the affected area, are highly recommended in most cases. Topical drugs can be distributed in the form of creams, gels, lotions, solutions, or shampoos. Some of antifungal drugs can be taken by mouth. For some infections cases, dermatologists can prescribe corticosteroids to relieve inflammation and itching.
Measures to prevent moisture. In addition to antifungal drugs, people can apply measures to keep the affected areas dry, such as using powders or wearing open-toed shoes.
Fungi can be difficult to treat completely. It is important to know the symptoms and treatment for skin and nail infections. And talk to your doctors when you are suffering this condition.
Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.
Review Date: May 21, 2017 | Last Modified: May 24, 2017
Fungal skin infections. http://www.dermnetnz.org/topics/fungal-skin-infections/. Assessed January 15, 2017.
Fungal Infections of the Skin. http://www.webmd.com/skin-problems-and-treatments/guide/fungal-infections-skin#1. Assessed January 15, 2017.