Mycosis is a condition where in the fungi passes through the human barrier resistance or animal body which then establish infection. It is common in humid and hot climate and when an individual lives in a crowded area. Fungi multiply through the air’s tiny spores. The spores lands on the skin or inhaled, thus, fungi starts in the skin or in the lungs.
People consuming strong antibiotics for a long time are more at risk in having fungal infection because antibiotics do not only kill harmful bacteria but the good bacteria as well. This alters the microorganism’s balance in the vagina, intestines, mouth and other areas in the body where fungus can grow.
Persons with weak immune systems have an increased risk in developing fungal infections like in people who have HIV or AIDS, under steroid therapy and chemotherapy. Diabetic patients are also susceptible in developing fungal infection. Very old and very young people are at risk as well.
Fungal infection or mycosis is classified according to the level of skin or tissue being colonized.
· Superficial Mycosis
Superficial mycosis is confined only to the outermost layer of the hair and skin. Tinea vesicolor is an example of fungal infection which commonly affects the young people especially in the chest, upper arms, back and legs. Usually, it does not affect the face. This type of fungal infection produces spots that can either be lighter than the person’s skin or reddish brown. It exists in 2 forms and the other one displays visible spots. Hormone, immune system abnormality and high humidity are the factors that cause fungus to be more visible, though almost all people affected with this condition are healthy.
· Cutaneous Mycosis
Cutaneos mycosis is confined deeper in the epidermis including the invasive nail and hair diseases. This is restricted in the layers of the skin, nails and hair that are keratinized. Unlike in superficial mycosis, the immune response of the host is stimulated resulting into pathologic changes in the skin’s deeper layer. Dermatophytes are the organisms that cause this disease. The disease is commonly called as ringworm or tinea. A Trichophyton, microsporum, and epidermophyton fungus which comprises the 41 species causes cutaneous mycosis.
Athlete’s foot is a common disease affecting men and children as well before puberty starts. There are three categories: chronic scaly athlete’s foot, chronic interdigital athlete’s foot and acute vesicular athlete’s foot.
· Subcutaneous Mycosis
The dermis, muscle, fascia and subcutaneous tissues are involved in subcutaneous mycosis. This is a chronic infection that is started when a cut is done in the skin causing the fungi entry. This kind of infection is difficult to treat and debridement, a surgical procedure may be done if necessary.
Antifungal drugs are the treatment for fungal infections. Systemic or topical agents may be used depending on the severity of the infection. Photopheresis or photochemotherapy is a technique used to treat mycosis fungoides by medical practitioners.
Antifungal drugs such as diflucan or fluconazole are over the counter antifungal treatments. Amphotericin B is more potent and is administered to patients who developed resistance from previous treatments. It is given intravenously.