Tinea Versicolor Symptoms & Causes

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In-Depth

What is tinea versicolor?

Tinea versicolor is a common fungal skin infection characterized by lighter or darker patches on the skin. Patches are most often found on the chest or back and prevent the skin from tanning evenly. It occurs mostly in adolescence and early adulthood, but it can occur at any time.

What are the symptoms of tinea versicolor?

Typically, the only symptom of tinea versicolor is the white or light brown patches that appear on the skin. Patches may scale slightly but rarely itch or hurt.

Other common characteristics of the rash include:

  • white, pink or brown patches
  • infection only on the top layers of the skin
  • usually occurs on the trunk
  • does not usually occur on the face
  • patches that worsen in the heat or humidity, or if your child is on steroid therapy or has a weakened immune system
  • patches that are most noticeable in the summer

The symptoms of tinea versicolor may resemble other skin conditions. Always consult your child's physician for diagnosis.

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