Trichophytosis: symptoms and treatment
Trichophytosis is a virulent disease caused by a fungus such as Trichophyton that affects the scalp, smooth skin, and in rare cases also the nails of a person. If you do not diagnose the disease in time and start treatment, the infection can lead to serious problems with the integrity of the skin and lead to persistent baldness.
The main sources of the disease are people who carry such a fungus, pets (most often cats) and common objects of use with an infected person — this type of infection is especially common among members of the same family.
The risk of the disease in all sex and age groups is almost the same, but according to statistics, children of primary school age and preschool age become infected with trichophytosis much more often than adults. The main symptom is a sharp hair loss. At a detailed examination it can be revealed that the hairs are broken off at the root itself.
The first signs of infection appear during the first week after the infection.
With timely treatment, the ailment passes without a trace. Observance of the main recommendations for the prevention of the disease by immediate relatives, can protect a person from contracting a fungal infection.
The causes of fungal infection are:
- connection with an infected person
- contact with an animal that is afflicted with such a disease
- various injuries and cuts of the skin through which infection occurs
- weakened immunity;
- chronic diseases
- lack of some vitamins in the body.
The fungus, which falls off with particles of hair or wool, can survive in the soil for up to several months, from which it follows that infection with the fungus can worsen in the autumn-spring period, when agricultural work begins. The likelihood of entry into the body of such a virus in farmers and farmers.
A high chance of transmission of the virus in children who attend kindergarten or junior classes of the school, because parents often lead the infected children into the collective (not knowing that they are infected).
There are several types of fungal infection:
- superficial trichophytosis. It is characterized by damage to the upper layers of the skin and hair. On the skin of a person there are small spots with a clear outline, bright red color (the size does not exceed two centimeters). Foci are many, but they are all located separately, and do not merge into one large spot. The hair cover noticeably loses its density. In the case when the hair is broken off from the root, small black dots covered with crust are observed on the head
- suppurative — in which the skin first peels off, and then small but painful vesicles appear that eventually burst, purulent fluid is released from them. After the destruction of the bubbles, the lesion is covered with a crust. It can progress on one or another surface of the human body from several weeks to five months. Appears in the form of pink spots, which are initially small in size, and then grow together, and form one large spot;
- Chronic trichophytosis — is a neglected or incompletely cured superficial form that often appears in adults, as a result of improper treatment in childhood. It is expressed very often in women. Men are much less likely, because during puberty they often have self-healing from an ailment. Women can be localized not only on the scalp — the areas of the shins, elbows, forearms, chest, groin area are affected. Elements of the rash can appear in all these places simultaneously.
Surface trichophytosis, in turn, is divided into:
- trichophytosis of the scalp — very often affects the occiput and has the appearance of small spots that are slightly higher in level than the healthy skin
- trichophytosis of smooth skin — in case of untimely treatment on spots, small ulcers may appear that will affect the deeper layers of the skin
- trichophytosis of the nails. It occurs extremely rarely, mainly as a consequence of the chronic type of disease. It looks like a small white spot on the nail plate, which gradually grows in size and takes a gray-yellow hue, and the surface of the nail ceases to be even. The disease itself has a long duration of flow, and without any treatment can last for years.
The main symptoms of trichophytosis are:
- hair loss — they can break off both from the root and a few millimeters from it
- skin color changes. For trichophytosis smooth skin is characterized by the appearance of red spots, which can gradually change the shade to burgundy or violet;
- the appearance on the head of black dots covered with plaque — is a sign of trichophytosis of the scalp;
- a weak feeling of itching — but in most cases such a symptom is absent;
- the swelling of the part of the skin surface on which the spots formed
- secretion of fluid with impurities of pus from vesicles localized on the skin. After that, they wither and the skin becomes crusted
- skin peeling
- increased brittleness and delamination of nails
With chronic trichophytosis of the scalp, almost no symptoms are expressed. In this case, a person can not for a long time not be aware of his problem. The only way to detect signs of infection is in women with thick hair, but at the same time, this can be a problem for diagnosis, since it will be difficult for a doctor to notice the appearance of characteristic black dots. Chronic trichophytosis of smooth skin has an almost identical appearance with another dermatological disorder — eczema.
Only a highly qualified doctor can diagnose and prescribe the treatment, for which it is not difficult to correctly diagnose external specific manifestations of trichophytosis on the skin or human hair. After this, if possible, it is necessary to find out the causes of the onset of the disease and the intensity of the symptoms.
For additional confirmation, the hair cover is inspected with special lighting, as well as determining how deep the ulcers are on the skin. In some cases, a laboratory examination of the hair or scraping from the damaged skin may be necessary for diagnosis.
After conducting the diagnosis and determining the final diagnosis, treatment is prescribed, which will be different for different manifestations of trichophytosis. For treatment of superficial trichophytosis without hair loss, iodine mesh and antifungal ointments are used.
If hair is involved in the process of infection, the treatment will take place in a slightly different way. To do this, the patient will need to take antifungal substances inside, and get rid of the damaged hair by cutting.
With a purulent type of infection, ointments are used that should soften the crust, as well as antibacterial and absorbable gels. In case of severe damage to the skin with deep ulcers, a combination of hormonal substances is prescribed to restore, in addition to antifungal agents.
Prevention of any type of trichophytosis is:
- Avoiding communication or any contact with infected people
- control of children during contact with animals. It is recommended not to touch the homeless animals
- the use of personal hygiene products, and not common. This applies to members of the same family
- rational nutrition, enriched with vitamins
- checking pets by a veterinarian to prevent infection;
- examination of all family members, if at least one of them had signs of trichophytosis
- Regularly undergo a routine checkup with doctors (several times a year).