Tinea Capitis, commonly known as ringworm of the scalp, is a fungal infection that affects the scalp and hair shafts. It’s most commonly seen in children, and its symptoms include:
- Scalp Lesions: The infection often presents as scaly, ring-like lesions on the scalp. These can be itchy and may appear red or inflamed.
- Hair Loss: Tinea Capitis can cause hair loss in patches. The hair may break off at the scalp, leaving bald spots.
- Itching and Discomfort: The affected area can be itchy and uncomfortable for the child.
- Kerion Formation: In severe cases, a kerion may form. This is a swollen, tender lesion that can ooze pus.
- Black Dots: Sometimes, the infection leads to hair breaking off at the scalp level, leaving black dots.
- Lymph Node Swelling: Swollen lymph nodes in the neck are a common symptom, indicating the body’s response to the infection.
- Carrier State: Some children may carry the fungus without showing symptoms, potentially spreading it to others.
Tinea Capitis is highly contagious and can spread through direct contact with infected people or animals, or indirectly through contact with objects like combs, hats, or pillows. Treatment typically involves antifungal medications, and it’s important to follow the full course of treatment to ensure the infection is completely eradicated. In some cases, medicated shampoos may also be recommended to reduce the risk of spreading the infection.
It’s important to consult a healthcare provider for an accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment plan, as similar symptoms can be caused by other conditions. Additionally, measures should be taken to prevent the spread of the infection, such as not sharing personal items like hairbrushes and maintaining good hygiene practices.