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Fungal Infections - Frequently Asked Questions

Last Updated on May 27, 2017
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Q: Which specialist should I consult for red itchy lesions on the skin?

A: You should consult a dermatologist (skin specialist).

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Q: How long do I need to take anti-fungal medicines?

A: The duration of anti-fungal drug treatment varies and usually depends on the location and severity of the infection, and your immunity. Vaginal thrush requires only a few days treatment but fungal infection of the toenails may require up to 8 weeks of treatment.

Q: Is there a way I can prevent getting ringworm on my feet frequently?

A: Fungi need warm and moist conditions to grow. It is thus advisable to keep your feet clean and dry. Avoid wearing shoes that are tight for long. Sandals or slippers may be preferred whenever possible.  Anti-fungal dusting powders may help to keep feet dry. Importantly, keep your toenails trimmed and clean. Wear cotton socks and change them every day.

Q: Are ringworm infections serious?

A: Fortunately, ringworm infections are not serious since they do not invade the deeper tissues.

Q: Can I get ringworm from my pet?

A: Yes. Ringworm can also affect your pet and you can get infected by handling your pet animal.

Q: Is it safe to take antifungals long term?

A: Antifungals are safe in most people. However, they should be used carefully or avoided in patients with liver disease. If you develop symptoms such as loss of appetite, nausea or abdominal pain, immediately consult your doctor.

Q: How is vaginal yeast infection caused?

A: Normally, overgrowth of yeast in the vagina is kept in check by a bacterium called lactobacillus, which maintains an acidic environment in the vagina. Conditions that upset this balance such as prolonged antibiotic therapy, pregnancy, diabetes or HIV infection can lead to vaginal candidiasis.

Q: Can oral antifungal drugs be taken during pregnancy?

A: No. Most oral antifungal drugs should be avoided during pregnancy and breastfeeding. Please consult your doctor to advise you in this regard.

Q: Can I stop taking antifungal treatment if symptoms get better earlier?

A: It is advisable to complete the prescribed course of treatment always.

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