Hay Fever is also medically termed as rhinitis. It can be divided into Allergic Rhinitis and Non-Allergic Rhinitis.
Living in a hot humid climate of Singapore, fungal infection of the skin is common. The fungus thrives and favors body areas that are moist and warm such as the armpit, breast folds, groin, buttocks, feet, toes or even nails.
In people with lower immune system such as diabetes, fungal infection can recur frequently. One can even manifest with a dramatic widespread fungal rash.
Superficial skin fungal infections are commonly caused 2 main groups of fungi: The dermatophytes (such as Trichophyton, Epidermophyton and Microsporum spp), and Yeast (such as candida spp). Dermatophytes tends cause fungal infection affecting the skin surface, hair and nails. Yeast, on the other hand, causes fungal infection affecting the skin, nail and mucous membrane.
Commonly, the symptoms for skin fungal and bacterial infection may overlap or both infection can co-exist concurrently.
A simple guide of distinguishing both skin fungal infection and bacterial infection is as below.
|Symptoms||Skin fungal infection||Skin Bacterial Infection|
|Margin||Generally well defined red patch||Less defined, slightly more indurated|
|Other features||Scaly +|
May have scattering pustules
Center of the rash maybe fainter in color
May present with blisters
|Uniformed in color|
May have deep seated pus, with oozing sinus
May present with blisters
|Systemic symptoms||Intense itch||Less intense itch, pain and fever|
Everyone has a risk to develop a skin fungal infection. As the climate in Singapore is relatively hot and humid, skin fungal infection is a common infective skin condition seen locally.
Although healthy people can develop skin fungal infections, patients who are immunocompromised, diabetes, background retroviral disease, cancer patients may have higher risk to develop skin fungal infection.
Skin fungal infection are usually diagnosed visually during clinical examination, supported by patient’s clinical history. Occasionally when the diagnosis is inconclusive, your doctor may advise you for fungal scrape, fungal culture or skin biopsy to confirm the diagnosis.
In mild fungal infection cases, it is treated with anti-fungal cream. Oral anti-fungal medication may be required in more severe recalcitrant cases or infection that affects a large surface of the skin. Speak to your doctor on individual treatment options.
The skin environment can be a suitable place for fungus to thrive due to the below reasons:
Checking the skin or nail lesion with wood lamp involves shining a hand-held wood lamp device on the area of concern by your physician.
Cryotherapy or colloquially known as ‘cold therapy’ is a procedure that uses liquid nitrogen to deliver freezing cold temperature locally to destroy and remove abnormal skin lesion.
Electrocautery is a bedside procedure where your doctor will use an ‘electric pen’ to deliver high frequency electric current onto the skin to generate heat in order to stop bleeding or remove abnormal skin cells
A steroid injection is simple bedside procedure where your doctor will inject minute amount of steroid onto the skin.
Skin cancer screening is usually performed by your physician using a dermatoscope. Dermatoscope is a medical magnifying glass that allows your physician to visualize the size and shape of the mole that you are concerned of.
Fungal scrape and bacterial culture tests allow physician to confirm or debunk fungal/bacterial diagnosis of skin condition
Skin tags are benign. They are also known as acrochordons medically. They are small, soft overgrowth of the skin commonly located among the face, eyelids neck, armpit, groin, breasts and buttock folds.
An excision biopsy is a bedside procedure where your doctor uses a surgical blade to remove the entire skin lesion under the use of local anaesthesia.
A shave biopsy a bedside procedure where your doctor uses a surgical superficial shaving blade to remove the skin lesion under the use of local anaesthesia.
A skin biopsy, or punch biopsy, is a bedside surgical procedure where your physician will use a small knife ‘puncher’ to obtain a small skin sample under local anaesthesia.
Herpes zoster, commonly referred to as shingles, is a painful blistering rash caused by the varicella-zoster virus— the same virus that causes chickenpox.
Seborrheic Dermatitis is a common chronic inflammatory condition of the skin. It is categorized as a type of chronic eczema, affecting the body area that has more sebaceous glands. characterized by red, greasy scaly patches.
Eczema is a common inflammation condition of the skin. Although eczema can occur any time in one’s life, it typically starts presenting when one is a child.
Psoriasis is a chronic inflammatory skin condition. It is a common skin disease that can affect 1 in 50 people.
Nearly 20% of people will get hives at some point in their lifetime. While they may not be life-threatening, hives can potentially cause both physical and emotional issues, particularly if they occur frequently.
Your body’s natural reaction to pokes, cuts, and trauma to your skin is to heal. On most occasions, skin injuries heal up without any problems.