Fungal skin infections are caused by a range of different types of fungi, including yeasts. They’re incredibly common, and may mean the skin is itchy, raw or discoloured.
Diagnosing Fungal Skin Infections
If a patient presents with a suspected fungal skin infection you’ll need to ascertain their symptoms and medical history and complete a physical examination. A sample of the skin may also need to be sent away for tests.
What Are The Most Common Ones?
There’s a broad range of fungal skin problems and some of them are more common than others. These include:
Candida (yeast) Infections
Candida is a yeast, meaning it’s a type of fungus. It lives harmlessly, usually inside the gut and the vagina. However, in certain conditions candida can multiply and begin to have unpleasant symptoms. These infections are often around the genitals (vagina and penis), around folds of skin and in the mouth. Candida infections are often called ‘thrush’.
Ringworm is actually not a worm at all but a fungal infection. It gets its name from the way it looks, presenting as a ring-shaped rash. Ringworm can affect any part of the skin including the scalp.
Nail infections can affect both the toenails and the fingernails, and they can take quite some time to develop. A patient presenting with a fungal nail infection may have nails that are in-growing, discoloured, thickened or crumbly.
Athlete’s foot is another extremely common skin infection, and its medical name is tinea pedis. It’s caused by fungi that grow in the skin on the soles of the feet and between the toes, and can be itchy, red, scaly or blistered. It’s made worse if the skin on the feet is moist due to sweat, and painful fissures can open up that may bleed.
As A Healthcare Practitioner, Do You Feel Confident In Identifying And Treating Common (And Less Common) Skin Conditions?
If you need to brush up on your skills in this area, we recommend our course Recognising and managing acute skin conditions in primary care. Designed specifically for healthcare professionals including nurse practitioners, primary care nurses and allied health professionals, it can help boost your confidence and develop the necessary skills in diagnosing and treatment common fungal skin conditions.
This 1-day course is delivered online via Zoom, so it’s the ideal chance to learn from home in a safe and socially distanced way. It’s worth a very valuable 7 hours of CPD and will take place on the 19th November 2020. Get booked up today!