Skin mycosis is caused by pathogenic fungi, dermatophytes or yeasts. The most common are foot and nail mycosis. However, there are also other types of mycosis such as scalp mycosis (commonly known as dandruff), epidermal, vaginal or vulvar mycosis. Ringworm is one of the most common skin diseases, affects around 20% of people around the world.
How is ringworm formed?
Ringworm occurs as a result of the infiltration of dermatophytes from animals, from the ground, from person to person. Can be carried using objects. Also, sweating and wearing non-ventilated clothes is conducive to the development of yeast, and thus the formation of ringworm. Fungi develop much faster in people whose body is weakened by long-term use of antibiotics, pregnancy, diabetes, cancer or AIDS. Dermatophytes multiply excessively and lead to lesions. It is worth noting that these fungi occur in the mucous membranes of a healthy person and their presence in small quantities is not harmful to the human body.
Diagnosis of skin ringworm
The mycological examination must always be the basis for the diagnosis of dermatomycosis. Hair, scales and scrapings from nails are taken for examination. They are used for microscopic preparation and culture. We usually wait 2 days for the yeast culture, 3 weeks for dermatophytes. If the result of the mycological test is negative, but not compatible with the symptoms, the doctor may repeat the test 2-3 times. The most common mistake is to start antifungal therapy before obtaining the result of mycological tests. If the treatment turns out to be ineffective, it is often not possible to determine whether it was skin mycosis at first.
A common mistake (especially when treating onychomycosis of the feet or nails) is reinfection from infected footwear. Skin fungus can affect the hair, cuticle or nails. The most common forms are foot and nail mycosis.
Skin ringworm – causes and risk factors
Skin mycosis is mainly caused by dermatophytes of the type: Trichophyton (they constitute over 50% of all fungal infections), Microsporum and Epidermophyton, which can be easily infected from other infected people, animals or through contact with spores of fungi found on personal belongings (e.g. footwear, towels, clothing).
The development of fungi is favored by moisture, heat and lack of light
In rarer cases, there are infections with geophilic fungi that reside in the soil.
Factors increasing the risk of infection are reduced immunity, hormonal disorders, skin keratosis disorders, systemic diseases, e.g. diabetes or circulatory failure, as well as the use of steroids, antibiotics. Also, the use of public swimming pools, showers, saunas and gyms increases the likelihood of developing skin mycosis.
Symptoms of ringworm that appear on the skin
– red patches with clear edges,
– skin redness often more pronounced at the edges and less noticeable in the middle,
– blisters with purulent discharge,
– an exceptionally light or dark skin tone