Tinea Infections, Cutaneous

Tinea Infections, Cutaneous is a topic covered in the 5-Minute Emergency Consult.

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  • Superficial fungal infections of the hair, skin, or nails:
    • Usually confined to the stratum corneum layer
    • Among the most common diseases worldwide
  • Requires keratin for growth, so does not involve mucosa
  • Named for location of infection


  • Dermatophytes:
    • Microsporum
    • Trichophyton
    • Epidermophyton
    • Malassezia furfur, a yeast, is the etiologic agent of tinea versicolor (not a true tinea)
  • Trauma or maceration of the skin may allow fungal entry into skin
  • Transmission may be person to person, animal to person, or soil to person

Pediatric Considerations
  • Fungi can be spread from toys and brushes
  • Tinea unguium is rare in children and is associated with:
    • Down syndrome
    • Immunosuppression
    • Tinea pedis or capitis

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