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.
KeywordsFungus Fungal Yeast Infection Benign Tinea versicolor Hyperpigmentation Hypopigmentation Antifungal Malassezia
- 4.Kane KS, Ryder JB, Johnson RA, Baden HP, Stratigos A. Chapter 21. Cutaneous fungal infections. In: Color atlas & synopsis of pediatric dermatology. New York: McGraw-Hill; 2002. p. 528.Google Scholar
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.