Doctor's Notes on Fungal Skin Infection vs. Eczema
The fungus candida commonly causes fungal skin infections (also called a yeast infection), although some other types of fungi can cause infection as well. Examples of fungal skin infections include diaper rash, systemic candidiasis, candidal paronychia, and body rash. Eczema (also called eczematous dermatitis) is a common skin condition that causes skin irritation and inflammation.
Symptoms and signs of candida fungal infections and eczema that are similar include:
- skin redness,
- itching (may be intense), and
- red rash.
Symptoms and signs of fungal skin infections vary depending on the location of the infection and may also include:
- softened red skin in body fold areas,
- hot and painful skin, and
- discoloration of the fingernails and toenails.
Symptoms and signs of eczema also include:
- bumps that itch and burn,
- painful cracks in the skin,
- puffy/red/itching eyelids, and
- oozing or crusty sores.
What Is the Treatment for Fungal Skin Infection vs. Eczema?
Fungal infections of the skin are treated with antifungal medications. The exact type of treatment depends on the type of infection. Some infections may be resolved with an over-the-counter antifungal cream, while others may require prescription topical or oral medications to eradicate the infection.
Eczema treatment involves creams to soothe the skin and reduce inflammation. Some newer topical drugs affect the body’s immune reaction. Severe cases are sometimes treated with oral corticosteroid drugs. A new, injectable drug known as dupilumab (Dupixent) may be used to treat severe cases that do not respond to other treatment options.
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EczemaEczema is a term frequently used to describe any sort of dermatitis. Causes include genetic inheritance. Common triggers of atopic dermatitis include soaps, detergents, solvents, lotions, sweating, staph bacteria, use of plastic or rubber gloves, or rough wool clothing. Treatment for eczema can be avoidance of irritants, OTC anti-inflammatory creams, prescription steroid and anti-inflammatory creams, and in some cases, antibiotics.
Yeast Infection (Candida, Candidiasis)Candidiasis is type of yeast infection, and is the most common type of yeast infection. Candidiasis yeast infections are caused by a fungus. Areas where candidiasis yeast infection can occur are vaginal, thrush (mouth), skin, diaper rash, nailbed, penile, and other genital organs. Treatment for candidiasis yeast infections are OTC and prescription medication. Rarely a candidiasis yeast infection can infect the internal organs and cause serious complications, even death.
Yeast Infection Skin RashCandidiasis is by far the most common type of yeast infections in human skin. Candidiasis is infection with Candida species. More than 20 species of Candida exist. Signs and symptoms of a candidal infection can vary depending on the location of the infection. Most candidal infections can be treated at home with over-the-counter or prescription medication and can clear up within a week.
Kasper, D.L., et al., eds. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 19th Ed. United States: McGraw-Hill Education, 2015.