Fungal infection - body; Infection - fungal - body; Tinea of the body; Tinea circinata; Ringworm - body
Tinea corporis is a skin infection due to fungi. It is also called ringworm of the body.
Tinea corporis is a common skin disorder among children. However, it may occur in people of all ages. It is caused by mold-like fungi called dermatophytes.
Fungi thrive in warm, moist areas. The following raise your risk for a fungal infection:
Tinea corporis can spread easily to other people. You can catch the condition if you come into direct contact with an area of ringworm on someone's body, or if you touch contaminated items such as:
The fungi can also be spread by pets (cats are common carriers).
Symptoms may include itching.
The rash begins as a small area of red, raised spots and pimples. The rash slowly becomes ring-shaped, with a red-colored, raised border and a clearer center. The border may look scaly.
The rash may occur on the arms, legs, face, or other exposed body areas.
Keep the skin clean and dry.
You can buy antifungal cream without a prescription, or your health care provider may prescribe it.
Once treatment has started, a child can return to school.
To prevent the infection from spreading:
Your health care provider will prescribe medicine taken by mouth to treat ringworm that:
Antibiotics may be needed to treat secondary bacterial infections.
Infected pets should also be treated.
Ringworm usually responds to topical medications within 4 weeks. Severe or resistant cases usually respond quickly to antifungal medicines taken by mouth.
Call for an appointment with your health care provider if ringworm does not improve with self-care.
Habif TP, ed. Clinical Dermatology. 5th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Mosby Elsevier;2009:pp 491-523.
Hay RJ. Dermatophytosis and other superficial mycoses. In: Mandell GL, Bennett JE, Dolin R, eds. Mandell, Douglas, and Bennett's Principles and Practice of Infectious Diseases. 7th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Churchill Livingstone Elsevier;2009:chap 267.
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