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Skin Care and Diseases

Fungal infection on the whole body

05/31/2006

Question:

I suffer from atopic eczma and my skin has been treated with cortisone creams. I have also developed what looks like reacuring fungal infection all over my body. The patches are scally , thichened, red and respond to antifungal topical treatment by drying out and scalling off. The skin is itchy and tight and sore. Yet one doctor regected the idea it beign a fungal infection. Is there a way to treat it faster and once for all?

Answer:

 It is unlikely that you have generalized fungal infection unless you live in a very unusual environment.  Individuals with atopic eczema may develop generalized dermatitis that is quite itchy, scaly and crusty.  It is very important for the correct diagnosis to be established through culture and/or biopsy with special stains.  If in fact you do have an extensive cutaneous fungal infection then systemic antifungal drugs are necessary.  They are often combined with topical treatment.  It is important for you to have an accurate diagnosis established immediately so that very specific therapy can be instituted.  You should see a board certified dermatologist at your earliest convenience so that the proper diagnosis can be established.

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Response by:

Charles L Heaton, MD
Professor
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati