Jock Itch (cont.)

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Is jock itch curable? Is jock itch contagious?

Most cases of jock itch are easily and fully curable. There are very uncommon, long-standing cases of jock itch that may not be curable. Often these more resistant cases may be controlled with proper treatment and medication. Jock itch sometimes clears completely by itself without treatment.

Although most cases of jock itch are not contagious, cases caused by an infection may be transmitted through skin or sexual contact, sharing of swimwear, or towels. It is possible to transmit fungal jock itch to someone else through close skin contact.

Some people are simply more prone to developing jock itch because of their overall health, activity, anatomy, possible altered immune status, exposure history, and other predisposing skin conditions like eczema. People with athlete's foot (tinea pedis) are more prone to developing jock itch.

What are possible complications of jock itch?

Complications are infrequent since jock itch is usually a self-limited skin condition. Rarely, the rash may spread past the groin onto the thighs and genitals. Secondary skin infections from scratching or rubbing can uncommonly deepen, causing cellulitis or abscess formation.

Another potential complication includes temporary skin discoloration called post-inflammatory hypopigmentation (lighter than the regular skin color) or hyperpigmentation (darker then the regular skin color). This altered skin color may occur after the rash has improved or after a temporary flare. Permanent scarring is uncommon.

What is the treatment for jock itch?

There are many treatment options and skin-care recipes for treating jock itch. Since the two primary causes of jock itch are excess moisture and fungal infections, treatment depends on the exact cause of the jock itch. Treatment of jock itch associated with skin irritation and excess moisture should address general measures to keep the groin clean and dry. Treatment of fungal jock itch should include antifungal creams used continuously for two to four weeks.

It is important to keep in mind that no therapy is uniformly effective in all people.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 6/12/2014

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