Tinea Cruris

What is Tinea Cruris?

Tinea cruris, commonly known as jock itch, is a fungal infection of the skin in the groin area. It is a common problem and often affects teenagers and adults. The fungus which causes tinea cruris is called Trichophyton rubrum and commonly flourishes in warm, moist areas such as the groin and inner thigh. Other names for this infection include dhobi itch and gym itch.

Signs and symptoms of Tinea Cruris

  • Red, raised itchy rash in the groin
  • Rash may have a scaly or bumpy appearance
  • Rash may be more red or darker than the surrounding skin
  • Mild to intense burning or itching of the affected area
  • Skin may appear thickened or flaky
  • Excessive sweating in the affected area

Other causes of groin rash

The most common culprit of a rash in the groin area is tinea cruris. However, other conditions can present with similar symptoms. These conditions include:

  • Atopic dermatitis – a form of eczema
  • Bacterial skin infection – such as impetigo
  • Allergic skin rash
  • Contact dermatitis
  • Seborrheic dermatitis

Diagnosis of Tinea Cruris

Tinea cruris is diagnosed by physical examination as well as cultures to identify the type of fungus causing the infection. A specimen of the rash may be taken for testing in a laboratory. In rare cases, allergies may need to be ruled out.

Treatment of Tinea Cruris

Treatment of tinea cruris usually involves antifungal creams or ointments. These can be purchased over-the-counter or may be prescribed by a doctor. It is important to be diligent and apply the antifungal cream or ointment as directed. Oral antifungal medications may be used if topical medications fail to clear the infection. In more severe cases, antifungal injections may be prescribed.

Complications of Tinea Cruris

It is important to treat tinea cruris promptly as it can spread to other parts of the body if left untreated. Other complications may include:

  • Secondary bacterial infection – infected sores can develop
  • Hyperpigmentation of the skin – patches of darkened skin may remain
  • Scarring of the affected area

Prevention of Tinea Cruris

The best way to prevent tinea cruris is to practice good hygiene such as wearing loose-fitting clothing, keeping the groin area dry, and avoiding sharing clothing or towels with others. As the fungus thrives in warm, moist areas, it is important to keep the groin area dry and to wear light, breathable clothing.