What are Fungal Infections?
Fungi are a group of organisms separate from plants and animals but have several characteristics similar to those of plants. They can grow and spread locally and then propagate by means of spores.
Fungal infections are quite common and although not serious, they can cause discomfort and misery. They are a large group that encompasses micro-organisms such as yeasts and molds right up to the larger more familiar mushrooms.
Fungi are abundant worldwide, but because of their small size and inconspicuous lifestyle they are hardly noticed unless causing an undesirable effect such as a skin rash. When these organisms grow on the surface of the skin in the mucous membranes, they cause an irritation of the underlying surface and set up unpleasant burning or itching sensations.
Fungi can be difficult to eradicate as they reproduce by spores which are like minute seeds. They are virtually impossible to see and they are resistant to heat and some chemical detergents. They can survive for long periods. They can become active again when conditions are right. The availability of moisture is an important condition.
Certain fungi are capable of causing skin infections in people.
This is a very common infection of adults, often caused by a combination of fungus and bacteria. It commonly affects the skin between the toes and makes the skin soggy and itchy.
Fungal nail infection
This is sometimes called ringworm and can cause the nail to become swollen, or discolored and malformed. Athlete’s foot can spread to involve the nail also.
Also called jock itch as it occurs in sports people causing a red itchy patch in the groin area.
This tends to affect young children and can cause patchy hair loss and localized redness. It can be spread from person to person but not everyone actually develops the condition. It is possible for it to lie dormant for years.
This affects the body often on exposed areas causing red patches.
Other infections are caused by yeasts.
Fungi are normally present in most people in their mouths and digestive systems, but cause no problem.
During an illness or if the immune system is compromised or the balance altered from antibiotics, then the fungi can multiply and cause symptoms, such as thrush.
Thrush can affect the mouth and tongue and areas lined with mucous membranes and moist folded skin.
Thrush infection often looks like small white patches, which, when rubbed dislodge to leave a reddened area.
Fungal infections can develop from:
1. Recent dosage of antibiotic
2. Have taken oral steroids
3. Suffer from obesity
4. You have diabetes
5. History of previous infection
6. You have a weakened immune system due to cancer or aids
Yeast and fungal infections thrive in moist areas. Drying your feet an in between your toes is important after bathing. Change your socks frequently.
Fungal infections that develop inside the body are more serious than when they occur on the skin.
Fortunately these occur much less frequently, but usually they only happen when the person’s immunity is seriously compromised.
Treatment for these skin infections is usually by means of anti-fungal agents. The are normally applied as either creams or sprays. If the infection is extensive, then medication taken by mouth may be necessary.
These treatments are generally effective, with only minimal side effects, but they do not prevent the infection from recurring.
Fungal Infection: Diagnosis and Management
by: Malcolm D. Richardson PhD FSB FRCPath
publisher: Wiley-Blackwell, published: 2012-03-20
sales rank: 803170
price: $52.46 (new), $56.19 (used)
Fungal Infection: Diagnosis and Management, 4th Edition is a concise and up-to-date guide to the clinical manifestations, laboratory diagnosis and management of superficial, subcutaneous and systemic fungal infections.
This highly acclaimed book has been extensively revised and updated throughout to ensure all drug and dosage recommendations are accurate and in agreement with current guidelines. A new chapter on infections caused by Pneumocystis jirovecii has been added. The book has been designed to enable rapid information retrieval and to help clinicians make informed decisions about diagnosis and patient management. Each chapter concludes with a list of recent key publications which have been carefully selected to facilitate efficient access to further information on specific aspects of fungal infections.
Clinical microbiologists, infectious disease specialists, as well as dermatologists, hematologists and oncologists, can depend on this contemporary text for authoritative information and the background necessary to understand fungal infections.
A view of a fungal infection on a patient´s axilla.
Parasites, Fungal Infections are pandemic in America -CHEK
Are you infected?? The odds are YES! Paul talks about how pervasive parasite and fungal infections are in the west and why. This talk is an abstract of his 9 hour audio CD series ”You Are What You Eat” available at CHEK Institute.com. Visit www.chekinstitute.com forPaul´s speaking schedule, to browse his accredited home study courses, to find a CHEK practitioner in your area or simply to read one of pauls dozens of free articles. Please RATE, COMMENT and SUBSCRIBE for more Paul Chek Live! Cancer, autoimmune, arthritis, digestive, colon, stomach, cardiovascular immunity health disease