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Mycoses : Definition, Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatment

Sunday, July 22nd 2012. | Disease, Skin, Hair and Nails

Mycoses Definition

Fungal infections are diseases caused by fungi. Only about 180 types of fungi on the existing 100,000 are pathogenic for humans.

Fungi affecting dermatological fall into three categories:

  • Dermatophytes (fungi): Trichophyton, Microsporum
  • Yeast (Blastomycetes): Candida, Pityrosporum
  • Moissures (hyphomycetes): Aspergillus

Dermatophytes are responsible for fungal skin infections on the head, torso and feet, known as tinea in Latin.

Yeasts causing infections mainly in the mucosa at the genital area (vaginal yeast infections), the mouth region (oral fungal infections) or esophagus (esophageal thrush). But this type of fungus is also responsible for fungal infections of internal organs, called systemic mycoses. The type of candida yeast plays a central role in these infections.

Molds are rarely responsible for cutaneous mycoses, but can instead expand into an already existing infection and worsen symptoms. This type of fungus most often reaches the internal organs to cause systemic mycoses.

Among the systemic mycoses, systemic mycoses are distinguished primary and opportunistic systemic mycoses:

  • Primary systemic mycoses : some types of fungi can cause infections in healthy subjects. The spores are everywhere and are inhaled into the lungs and then reach the body.
  • Opportunistic systemic mycoses : only individuals can be immunocompromised patients. In a healthy person, these fungi attach themselves to the internal and external surfaces of the body but do not trigger disease. However, in people whose immune system is weakened, mushrooms cross the protective surface and reach the surface and underlying tissues or the bloodstream.

Mycoses (re edit img : healtoncare.com)

Mycoses Causes

Mycoses Fungal infections are favored by:

  • Skin lesions
  • Bad shoes (rubber boots, heat storage, sweating).
  • Location to where the surface layer of protection is less acidic (between toes).
  • Attendance of outdoor pools and public showers
  • Weak immune
  • Metabolic disorders or eating disorders (blood sugar, diarrhea in infants).
  • Certain medications (antibiotics, corticosteroids, cytostatic drugs to treat tumors).

Mycoses Disorders (symptoms)

Mycoses Objective symptoms:

  • Red round or oval lesions, which may peel off the edges and the center fading.
  • Pustules, eg. at the beard
  • White deposits attached to the mucous membranes (mouth, genitals)
  • Vaginal flow
  • Redness in the anal area and genitals
  • Rhagades erosions and between the fingers and toes
  • Erythematous lesions crusted and scaly scalp

Mycoses Subjective symptoms:

  • Itching
  • Unsightly staining of certain areas of the skin
  • Burning, mainly mucosal

Mycoses Diagnosis

  • Careful examination of the skin areas affected by fluorescent light (Wood’s lamp).
  • Smears of the lesions: sampling scales at the edges of lesions
  • Identification of the organism on a culture medium
  • Histology: use of special stains when the smear examinations and culture are negative but a fungal infection is suspected.

Mycoses Treatment Options

Fungal infections are very stubborn. Several preparations, which specifically inhibit the proliferation of fungi, are available to treat fungal infections.

Depending on the location of the infection, local preparations in the form of creams or sprays are used. For the systemic treatment, use is made of the tablets.


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