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Ringworm on Body (cont.)

When to Seek Medical Care for Ringworm on the Body

If the ringworm lesion fails to respond to over-the-counter antifungal medications (commonly used for athlete's foot) after one week of applying the medication, call a doctor. One will need the doctor to make sure that it is really ringworm and start prescription medication. It is important to have a physician diagnose this condition to treat it properly, as ringworm on the body can resemble other skin conditions such as eczema or psoriasis.

Generally, ringworm infections are not emergencies. But if someone develops fever, increased pain, swelling, drainage, or redness, which could suggest a bacterial secondary infection of the ringworm lesion, go to a hospital's emergency department.

Diagnosis of Ringworm on Body

The diagnosis of ringworm is usually made by clinical exam. To confirm the diagnosis of ringworm, the doctor may scrape the lesion's active border with a scalpel blade. After placing the scrapings onto a glass slide, the doctor will check the sample under a microscope. This may be done only if the diagnosis is not obvious to the treating physician.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 7/24/2015

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Read What Your Physician is Reading on Medscape

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The dermatophytes are a group of fungi (ringworm) that invade the dead keratin of skin, hair, and nails.

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