Tinea versicolor


Tinea versicolor, also known as pityriasis versicolor, is a common skin fungal infection. The spots of discoloration occur due to the fungus interfering with the skin’s natural pigmentation. The trunk and shoulders are the most common areas affected by these patches, which can have shades other than the surrounding skin.

Individuals who have tinea versicolor may get brown, red, yellow, pink, or white spots. It results from an overgrowth of a kind of yeast (fungus) that is normally present on your skin. Sun exposure, hot temperatures, and humidity may worsen tinea versicolor. It can be a little itchy, but it’s not harmful or contagious. However, emotional distress or self-consciousness may result from it.

Antifungal medications applied topically or orally are used by healthcare providers to treat the disease. There are some over-the-counter remedies available. Most cases of tinea versicolor are completely cured with treatment. The abnormal skin color can persist for a few weeks or months even after a successful course of treatment. Recurrence of tinea versicolor is common, particularly in warm, humid weather.

Usually, tinea versicolor has no significant side effects. Without treatment, symptoms can get worse, leading to increased itching or more pronounced discoloration.


For most cases of tinea versicolor, the signs and symptoms include the following:

  • Discolored patches of skin, commonly on the upper arms, back, chest, and neck; these patches may seem lighter or darker than usual.
  • Excessive sweating.
  • Mild itching around the affected area.
  • Scaling of the skin.

After two to three weeks of daily use of medication, get in touch with your healthcare provider if you don’t see any change or the fungal infection returns. Maybe they should recommend a medication that works better.


Healthy skin may carry the fungus that causes tinea versicolor. The fungal overgrowth is when it starts to cause problems. The growth could be caused by a number of factors, including:

  • Hormonal changes
  • Weakened immune system
  • Hot, humid weather
  • Oily skin
  • Sweating