Fungal Infection:Causes, Symptoms, Treatment

Reviewed by Dr Hasan Feroz M.D, Written By Dr Mohammad Osama

Overview

Fungal Infections are common infection and it may be found in any age groups whether he is baby or adult or old age peoples. Fungal infections affects skin but it may also affects finger and toe nails. It causes a lot of discomfort, itchiness and annoying symptoms. Fungal infections are not life threatening infections but due to the severity in some cases it may cause death.

There are several types of fungus lives in the environment. Some fungus are edibles like mushrooms while some are infectious like candida, cryptococcus etc. Most of the fungi are found in our body surface as well as in our environment and when our immune system weakens they entered into our body and start causing infections.

Fungal infections are highly contagious and if you directly came into contact with affected person the possibility is you can get the infection from that person.

Types of Infection

There are several types of fungal infections affecting different parts of the body like some infections affected groin area while some affected your nails as well as some affected the most humid areas of body like spaces between the fingers and your armpit etc.

Here are the some infection which are as follows:-

  • Ring Worm
  • Athlete’s Foot
  • Jock Itch
  • Yeast infection
  • Fungal infections of nails (Onychomychosis)

Ring Worm

Ring worm infection is caused by the dermatophytosis which looks like rings patchy and circled causes itching and discomfort in the affected area. It is also known as tinea infection. it affects the humid area of the body as well as in the scalp also.

Symptoms

  • Patchy, itchy area
  • Bald patches on the Scalp
  • Patches looks reddish while outer surface is more dominant red.

Diagnosis

Your treating Doctor/Dermatologist will examine the affected area and if he want further investigation he will take the sample of your affected area and send it to lab.

Treatment

Treatment of the ringworm infection is anti fungal creams, ointments and OTC medicines. Typically this problem resolves within three to five days after starting proper treatment.

Jock Itch

Jock itch is caused by tinea cruris. it affects mostly the wet,humid part of the body like groin area, armpit and where the sweat accumulates alot.

Symptoms

  • Redness and itching
  • Burning Feel
  • Cracking Skin
  • Discomfort in the affected area

Diagnosis

Your treating doctor/dermatologist may diagnose jock itch by seeing the affected area. if further investigation will be required he may send the sample of your skin for laboratory investigation.

Treatment

Treatment of jock itch is antifungal creams, ointment and in some severe cases oral medicines like itraconazole and fluconazole may be required. Proper hygiene and keeping the area dry may lead to early recovery from the disease.

Athlete’s Foot

Athlete’s foot is known as tinea pedis. it is affected the area around your fingers, nails and toe nails. The infection is caused by dermatophyts which lives in the warm and humid areas of your body parts. This infection is stubborn type if it affected your nails. It is not easily treatable and the recurrence of the athlete’s foot is very much.

Symptoms

It symptoms includes burning, itching and sensation in the affected area.

Treatment

Treatment of this disease is generally anti fungal drugs and antifungal ointment, creams etc which gives relief . it is mandatory to complete the course of treatment as per doctors advice because half treatment causes recurrence of the disease which is not easily curable.

Yeast Infection

Yeast infection or vaginal yeast infection is caused by candida fungus. This cause extreme itchiness, redness and inflammation. The white discharge may also be from vagina causing smell. A vaginal yeast infection is differ from Sexual transmitted disease and it is caused by fungus.

Symptoms

  • Swelling
  • Redness
  • Itchiness
  • Thick white discharge
  • Pain during sex
  • Rashes

Treatment

Treatment of vaginal yeast infection consist anti fungal medicines which your doctor may prescribe in the form of cream, ointment and tablet form. The treatment generally continues to 3 to 5 days and the infection goes away.

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