Tinea versicolor is a fungal condition of the skin that causes flat white patches of discoloration.
The condition is fairly harmless. It may cause itching, but it is not contagious and does not cause other health problems. Tinea versicolor is most commonly found on the chest, back, under the arms, upper arms, neck, and face.
The fungus that causes tinea versicolor is called Pityrosporum ovale. This fungus normally lives in the pores of everyone’s skin but in patients with Tinea versicolor, the fungus overgrows and causes the discoloration. The most favorable condition for the fungus to grow is in warm weather and if the skin is particularly oily.
To treat tinea versicolor, you can use an over the counter dandruff shampoo that contains selenium sulfide. Apply the shampoo on and around the area and leave it on for ten to fifteen minutes, then rinse with water. If you do this for a couple of weeks, it is likely to kill off the fungus. The discoloration however, will take months to go away.
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