|Description:||Note the hair loss on this patient’s scalp as a resulting from a Trichophyton tonsurans fungal infestation also known as “ringworm”.|
Dermatophytes are fungi that cause skin, hair, and nail infections. Infections caused by these fungi are also sometimes known as "ringworm" or "tinea." Despite the name "ringworm," this infection is not caused by a worm, but by a type of fungus called a dermatophyte. Dermatophytes can live on moist areas of the skin, on environmental surfaces, and on household items such as clothing, towels, and bedding.
Dermatophyte infections can affect the skin on almost any area of the body, such as the scalp, legs, arms, feet groin, and nails. These infections are usually itchy. Redness, scaling, cracking of the skin, or a ring-shaped rash may occur. If the infection involves the scalp or beard, hair may fall out. Infected nails become discolored, thick, and may possibly crumble. More serious infections may lead to an abscess or cellulitis.