Tinea tonsurans

Tinea tonsurans

Description, Causes and Risk Factors:

ICD-10: B35.0.

Tinea tonsurans is one of the most common fungal infection in children. It is very contagious and spreads quickly from one person to other. Most of the times, your child may get tinea tonsurans in school and institutions, day nurseries, and other charitable institutions, where the opportunities for exposure and contact are great.

Since the body hosts an array of microorganisms, the existence of yeast-like fungi, bacteria, mold-like fungi are inevitable. Some may have been beneficial to the body's system, while others cause more damage than help.

Tinea tonsurans is caused by mold-like fungi called dermatophytes. It usually affects children and disappears at puberty. However, it can occur at any age.

The fungi that cause tinea tonsurans infections thrive in warm, moist areas. You have an increased risk for tinea tonsurans infection if you have:

    Minor skin or scalp injuries.

  • Poor hygiene.

  • Wet skin for a long time (such as from sweating).

  • Tinea infections are contagious. You can catch tinea tonsurans if you come into direct contact with someone who has the condition, or if you touch contaminated items such as combs, hats, or clothing. The infection can also be spread by pets, particularly cats.

If you or your child gets a tinea tonsurans then you must immediately take the steps to get rid of it. You can cure it easily when it is in early stages. But if you just leave it, then after some time it will cause major problems.


Typically, tinea tonsurans symptoms involve a distinct round or oval patch of scaly skin. These circular patches spread into a red outside border with a clear center.

Other general symptoms include:

    Reddening, crusting, and scaling of the scalp.

  • Mild to intense itching.

  • Hair loss.

  • Swollen lymph nodes in the neck.


The appearance of the scalp will make the health care provider suspect tinea tonsurans.

Tests may include:

    Skin lesion biopsy with microscopic examination or culture.

  • Wood's lamp test to confirm a fungal scalp infection.


Treatment is usually with antifungals. The objective of antifungal treatment is to manage the infection. If topical treatments are insufficient, oral antifungal medications may be recommended.

Make sure that the infected area is kept clean. Medicated shampoos, with active ingredient selenium sulfide, may prevent the spread of fungal infection in other parts of the body. Other infected family members as well as pets should also be treated considering the skin condition is contagious.

New antifungal medications available in drug stores, such as fluconazole, itraconazole, ketoconazole, and terbinafine have been proven to be effective as alternative therapeutic agents.

For more accurate treatment consult your dermatologist.

NOTE: The above information is educational purpose. The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition.

DISCLAIMER: This information should not substitute for seeking responsible, professional medical care.


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