Infectious Diseases of the Skin

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Infectious Diseases of the Skin

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1. Infectious Diseases of the Skin


3. Ringworm, also known as Tinea, is a skin infection, characterized by a reddish raised patch of skin that may sometimes be lighter in the middle, looking like a ring. Although called ringworm, this infection is not caused by a worm but by parasitic fungi. These fungi feed on keratin, the material found in the outer layer of skin, hair, and nails. They also thrive best on skin that is moist, hot, and away from light. Ringworm is very common, can occur anywhere in the body, and may be spread by skin-to-skin contact, as well as through contact with contaminated items.

4. RINGWORM Ringworm is mildly contagious and because it is a common infection in domestic animals, humans can easily become infected through close contact with them. Treatment of ringworm involves use of a topical anti fungal cream, many of which can be bought over the counter without a prescription. Treatment may last several weeks. In order to prevent ringworm: Retain from sharing clothing, sports equipment, towels, or sheets. Wear loose-fitting cotton clothing. Keep skin clean and dry.


6. ATHLETE’S FOOT Athlete's foot, also known as Tinea pedis, is a parasitic fungal infection of the epidermis of the foot. It is usually caused by mold or by yeast that grows on the surface of the skin. It usually occurs between the toes, but may spread to the bottom and sides of the foot. This infection is more common in males than females. It is also the second most common skin disease in the United States, after acne, affecting about 15% of the population. Athlete's foot causes scaling, flaking and itching of the affected skin. Blisters and cracked skin may also occur, leading to exposed raw tissue, pain, swelling and inflammation.

7. ATHLETE’S FOOT Athlete's foot is typically transmitted in moist environments where people walk barefoot, such as showers and locker rooms. It can also be transmitted by sharing shoes or towels with an infected person. There are many anti fungal medications for the treatment of athlete's foot. But along with medication it is important to practice good hygiene - it alone can cure athlete's foot in 30-40% of the cases. To prevent athlete’s foot: Dry feet well after showering, wear lightweight cotton socks and shoes that allow your feet to breathe, avoid sharing footwear and towels, use foot powder to reduce sweat and avoid walking barefoot.


9. BLASTOMYCOSIS Blastomycosis is a fungal infection caused by the organism Blastomyces dermatitidis. It was first described by Thomas Casper Gilchrist in 1894 and is sometimes referred to Gilchrist’s disease or Chicago disease. It occurs in people that live in the south-central and Midwestern United States and Canada (because of the acidic soil found there). Out of every 100,000 people 1-2 people are infected. Infection occurs by inhalation of the fungus, which is found in wood and soil. Once inhaled in the lungs, they multiply and may spread through the blood to other organs.

10. BLASTOMYCOSIS Some of the symptoms seen with blastomycosis are cough, shortness of breath, sweating, fever, fatigue, uneasiness, weight loss, joint and muscle stiffness and pain, rash, skin lesions, chest pain. The treatment of choice for most forms of the disease is Itraconazole given orally. Cure rates are high, and the treatment over a period of months is usually well tolerated. There isn’t really a way to prevent blastomycosis. The only thing you can try to do is to avoid areas where the infection is known to occur to help prevent exposure to the fungus.

11. QUESTIONS 1. Ringworm is a disease caused by direct contact with a worm. A. True B. False 2. Which of the following is not a cause of athlete’s foot? A. Walking barefoot B. Wearing open shoes C. Sharing footwear D. Wearing wet socks

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