Ringworm is a contagious skin disease resulting from a fungal infection commonly caused by the fungus Trichophyton rubrum. It spreads by direct contact from other humans or infected animals. The use of communal showers and swimming pools and the sharing of towels or sportswear can transmit infection. It can infect several areas of the skin from the scalp to the feet (known as athlete’s foot) to the groin (better known as “jock itch”) and everything in between. Ringworm infections generally result in itchy red, scaly round patches on the skin that are not only unsightly but can cause discomfort.
Only a qualified doctor can estimate the level of severity of the disease. They can prevent further complications and prescribe a proper treatment regimen for a particular case. Usually, localized ringworm of the body or flexures is treated with topical antifungal creams. More diffuse infections may need oral antifungal therapy. This also applies to the most resistant form of ringworm. Normally, treatment lasts between two and three months.