Tinea versicolor is a non contagious rash caused by an overgrowth of a naturally occurring yeast on the skin. This overgrowth is precipitated by a number of factors including excessive sweating, hot and humid weather, oily skin or use of oil based products, hormonal changes, tight and non-ventilating clothing and decreased immune function from diseases such as diabetes. The yeast interferes with normal skin pigmentation and the rash typically appears as gradually expanding white, pink, tan or brown patches that are more obvious with sun exposure. The trunk, neck and upper arms are the most commonly affected areas.
Home therapy is reasonable and, although response is slow, can be successful at treating the condition. Selsun blue shampoo applied for ten minutes once or twice a day to the rash is often effective, as is Lotrimen or Monistat cream, used with the same frequency. Treatment should be at least two weeks, and usually requires up to six weeks duration. If no response is seen by that time, or there is recurrence, a medical consult is recommended, typically with oral medication being prescribed…..Richard R Samuel, MD Family Practice and Urgent Care Hayden, ID USA