The most common tinea symptoms are a rash and itchiness. Depending on the type of infection, the rash often appears red and grows outward on the skin. Some infections cause a lighter colored rash that looks like dry skin. Other symptoms can include scaly skin, nail discoloration, and even hair loss if the infection affects the scalp. There are a number of different types of tinea, so the exact symptoms vary depending on the area of body involved.
The term tinea actually refers to a group of fungal infections. These infections, also known as dermatophytosis infections, are caused by a fungal parasite that can grow in the skin. The different types of infection are named according to which part of the body they affect. Tinea pedis, for example, affects the feet, while tinea manuum is an infection of the hand. Fungal skin infections are very common, especially among athletes who play a lot of contact sports.
There are some tinea symptoms that are common to all types of the infection. A rash, for example, is nearly always present. It often grows outward in a circular pattern, leading to the condition sometimes being known as ringworm. The presentation of the condition depends on which part of the body is affected. In some cases the rash is red and itchy, while in others it just looks like an area of dead skin.
Other potential tinea symptoms include itching over the area of infection and a scaly skin appearance. The patient might also notice a change in the color of the nails, although this depends on the type of infection. If the infection has affected the scalp or face, it can result in hair loss. As there is such a variety of tinea symptoms, the condition is often mistaken for other skin disorders.
One of the most common types of tinea is tinea pedis, also known as athlete’s foot. This condition often affects the skin on the bottom of the foot, i.e., the plantar surface. Along with a rash, other tinea pedis symptoms include pustules and skin discoloration. As athlete’s foot can be passed between people, the condition is often contracted at gyms or in swimming pools.
There are a number of other types of infection, each with different tinea symptoms. Tinea capitis, for example, is an infection of the scalp. Other types include tinea cruris, which is found in the groin area, and tinea barbae, which affects the face.