Tinea manuum is the parasitic infection (Mycosis) caused by fungus. It is of tinea group and affects hands. It looks like tinea pedis or fungal infection of feet but is more aggressive than tinea pedis. It is characterized by a scaly rash which is accompanied with itching, burning and cracking. It is treated mainly by antifungal creams and antifungal oral medicines.
Tinea manuum is sometimes confused with psoriasis, contact dermatitis, dyshidrosis( sweat gland disorder ) or interdigital erythrasma because symptoms are almost alike. To diagnose tinea manuum, apart from examining symptoms, doctor may recommend skin biopsy to confirm the disorder.
A scaly rash appears on the palms.
Though rash is not painful and show no other symptom than itching, stinging or burning.
Though infection can occur anywhere on the palms but it mostly occurs on the space between fingers.
If this fungal infection is not treated on time, it may cause damage and cracks to the skin.
Rashes can become fluid filled blisters which can ooze out. Skin becomes wet and weepy.
Further infection in the skin can cause inflammation. This condition is called cellulitis.
Vigorous scratching can cause secondary bacterial infection in the skin.
Tinea Manuum is caused by fungal infection. Hands can contract fungal infection by scratching any body part which is already infected by fungus.
Doctor can identify Tinea Manuum by visual examination and its symptoms. Doctor can analyze by appearance of characteristic rashes. Doctor may also scrape the rash and test the sample under the microscope. A culture of rash may also be taken to confirm the fungal infection and identify type of fungus.
Most of the treatments cure the infection successfully if taken for 2-4 weeks.
If rash is not severe and it is only dry and scaly, there are many anti-fungal creams available to treat the infection. While applying any anti-fungal cream, apply it on the rash and 4-6 cm of area around it. And also keep applying it 1-2 weeks even after removal of rash. There are several no-prescription drugs available. If those creams do not show any response, doctor may prescribe any medicine.
But if rash is wet due to oozing, person affected can apply aluminum subacetate solution to control the wetness. It also cures infection. Take the solution and dip the infected hand in the solution for 20 minutes. Do this procedure twice a day and than apply any anti-fungal cream.
If you have tinea manuum infection on nails, it can not be treated with antifungal creams. Doctor will prescribe oral anti-fungal medicines.
An oral antifungal medicine such as Griseofulvin can be taken for 2-4 weeks twice a day, if fungal infection of hand does not show any response to anti-fungal creams.
When the infection is cured completely, apply mild anti-fungal creams or anti-fungal powders to avoid reoccurrence of infection.
Other alternative medicine is Itraconazole, to be taken for 2 weeks. Terinafine is yet another medicine to be taken once a day for 2-4 weeks.
There are some simple measures, if taken, can prevent the occurrence of fungal infection.
The first and foremost measure to prevent fungal infection is by keeping the skin dry. Fungus grows on a skin which is damp for long.
Whenever you take bath or you are heavily sweated, make it a point dry the skin completely, especially the skin between the fingers.
Cloths you wear should be of loose fitting.
To completely remove the infection, you should try to disinfect all the body parts which have contracted infection. This is because; fungal infection can spread to other parts also by scratching or sharing of things like towel.
If you perspire a lot, do change your socks frequently.
Apply talcum powder to the area which is prone to perspiration to keep them dry.
Diabetic patients or people who are taking steroid medicines are more prone to fungal infections; they should be extra careful to prevent infection.
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