What is Dermatophytosis?
A fungal infection of the skin is known as Dermatophytosis. Some of the other common names by which it is known include dermatophyte infection, ringworm and even tinea.
It must be noted that the word ‘ringworm’ is a misnomer as this condition is caused by a fungus and not by any worm. The lesion that is caused due to this infection looks similar to a worm in the shape of a ring and hence this name came into existence.
This infection can harm both humans and animals.
There are quite a number of Dermatophytosis symptoms that there is to know about. The different symptoms vary basis the body part that is affected. However, despite that, there are some other common ones which we have listed below for your reference and knowledge:
- Patches that develop pustules or blisters
- Patches that are red, scaly and even itchy
- Raised areas on the skin known as plaques
- Patches that resembles a ring and looks redder on the outside or on the outline bit of it
- Patches on the skin that have edges which are more raised and defined than the rest of the area
Who is at Risk?
There are various Dermatophytosis risk factors as it can happen to anyone due to multiple and at any time. Some individuals are more sensitive to this condition as compared to others. However, experts have been able to identify certain risk factors related to this. We have mentioned them below for your reference and understanding of the same:
- An individual who does not practise good hygiene and thus has poor hygiene as a result
- Individuals who have a Topical steroid usage
- Individuals who have cats and dogs as these animals are very prone to this certain infection.
The Dermatophytosis causes varies depending upon the type of this condition that one has been affected with and the different type of fungi that causes this condition to begin with. There are certain conditions for which the exact cause is not known till now. However, we have discussed below for your understanding some of these causes across the types in details:
- When there is direct contact with soil as certain fungi are known to breed on it
- Contact with infected animals or humans especially children
These are some common causes that are known to possibly cause this condition.
How is Dermatophytosis diagnosed?
For Dermatophytosis diagnosis, a Dermatophytosis doctor will need to perform a certain number of tests for this condition as there is no one common test to understand the root cause of the problem. As mentioned, the doctor may then have to conduct multiple tests to get a proper understanding of the problem:
- The doctor will first start with a physical test with the help of a black light which he will hold against your skin to examine the infected area. Depending on the type of the fungus, that area will glow under the black light
- A fungal culture or a skin biopsy by taking a sample of skin
- A KOH exam is also done at times
How is Dermatophytosis Treated?
There are different methods for Dermatophytosis treatment as done by a Dermatophytosis doctor. Most of these treatments are something that can be done at home. We have mentioned in brief the process of treatment:
- Disinfecting surrounding
- Drying areas after taking a bath
- Wearing loose clothes in infected area
- Depending on severity of the condition doctor may prescribe some medicine for dermatophytosis.
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How can Dermatophytosis be prevented?
Prevention of Dermatophytosis starts with practising some good health and hygiene behaviours. However, having said that, there are some recommendations which might help an individual. Some of these have been mentioned below for your understanding and consideration:
- Thoroughly wash your hands after interacting with any animal
- If you have pets then periodically clean and disinfect the area
- Avoid coming in contact with individuals who have this condition
- Wear your shoes while walking or showering in a community area
- Ensure that you keep your skin clean and dry
- Avoid sharing personal items like hairbrushes and clothes