Monday, April 19, 2010

Study finds treatment-resistant ringworm prevalent among children in metro elementary schools

Approximately 7 percent of elementary school children across the bi-state, Kansas City metropolitan area are infected with the fungus Trichophyton tonsurans (T. tonsurans), the leading cause of ringworm in the U.S., according to a new study published today in Pediatrics. This is the largest study to date aimed at defining infection prevalence of the scalp fungus in children living in a metropolitan area and has implications for children nationwide.

"The organism T. tonsurans has become the leading cause of scalp infection in the U.S., and we believe it is on the rise in inner city areas," said Susan Abdel-Rahman, Pharm.D., lead study author and professor of pediatrics and pharmacy at Children's Mercy Hospitals and Clinics. "This study supports what I and many of my peers are seeing - children with scaly, itchy scalps and hair loss are prevalent in metropolitan areas. If not treated, ringworm can lead to permanent hair loss, which can damage a child's self image. There is also some evidence that it may worsen seemingly unrelated problems such as asthma and allergic rhinitis."

Although its name suggests otherwise, ringworm is caused by a fungus, not a worm. In the past, Microsporum species were the main cause of ringworm, often passed to humans from cats and dogs. However, in recent years, T. tonsurans emerged, which spreads directly between humans, and is more challenging to screen for and treat.


Source and More:
http://www.physorg.com/news190814002.html

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