Tinea Versicolor

  • Danya Reich
  • Corinna Eleni Psomadakis
  • Bobby Buka


A 24-year-old male presented to Primary Care with erythematous macular lesions affecting his chest, shoulders, and back. Based on their appearance and distribution, the lesions were diagnosed as tinea versicolor. Tinea versicolor is a common condition caused by overgrowth of the Malassezia yeast, which is a component of natural skin flora. The overgrowth results in skin dyspigmentation, typically on the back and upper trunk. The condition is benign and usually asymptomatic, with a minority of patients reporting mild pruritus. It occurs as a result of the interplay of internal factors, such as greasy or excessively sweaty skin, with environmental factors like heat and humidity. Tinea versicolor tends to affect young men and athletes, and is more common in warm climates and during summer months. The diagnosis is usually clinical. Tinea versicolor can usually be controlled by topical azole antifungals alone though more severe cases can require oral medication. After treatment it may take several months for skin to return to its normal pigment. The condition tends to recur and may require long-term preventative management.


Fungus Fungal Yeast Infection Benign Tinea versicolor Hyperpigmentation Hypopigmentation Antifungal Malassezia 


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© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2017

Open Access This chapter is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial License, which permits any noncommercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author(s) and source are credited.

Authors and Affiliations

  • Danya Reich
    • 1
  • Corinna Eleni Psomadakis
    • 2
  • Bobby Buka
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Family MedicineMount Sinai School of Medicine Attending Mount Sinai Doctors/Beth Israel Medical Group-WilliamsburgBrooklynUSA
  2. 2.School of Medicine Imperial College LondonLondonUK
  3. 3.Department of DermatologyMount Sinai School of MedicineNew YorkUSA

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