(Candidal skin infection; Mucocutaneous Candidiasis)
by Amy Scholten, MPH
A yeast infection is a skin infection from a type of fungus. It is most common in folds of skin, between toes or fingers, and in the mouth and genitals. It is often easy to treat.
A yeast infection is caused by an overgrowth of yeast on the skin. Bacteria and yeast are normally found on the skin. They usually keep each other under control. Sometimes there is an imbalance that causes yeast to grow too much. Yeast also grows in moist conditions.
Yeast skin infections are more common in warm, humid climates.
Other things that raise the risk are:
Symptoms of a yeast infection of the skin may be:
The doctor will ask about symptoms and past health. A physical exam will be done. The diagnosis may be made based on how the rash looks.
The doctor may scrape and test a small area of skin. This will confirm the presence of yeast and rule out other causes.
The goal is to clear the infection. Most yeast infections are treated with:
Sometimes, a steroid ointment or lotion is also applied to the skin. This helps ease inflammation.
The risk of a yeast infection can be reduced by:
American Academy of Dermatology
Family Doctor—American Academy of Family Physicians
Canadian Dermatology Association
Andreas Kühbacher, Anke Burger-Kentischer, et al. Interaction of candida species with the skin. Microorganisms. 2017; 5(2): 32.
Candidiasis. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Available at: https://www.cdc.gov/fungal/diseases/candidiasis/index.html. Accessed August 4, 2021.
Candidiasis (mucocutaneous). Merck Manual Professional Version website. Available at: https://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/dermatologic-disorders/fungal-skin-infections/candidiasis-mucocutaneous. Accessed August 4, 2021.
Invasive candidiasis in adults. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://www.dynamed.com/condition/invasive-candidiasis-in-adults. Accessed August 4, 2021.
Last reviewed July 2021 by EBSCO Medical Review Board Dan Ostrovsky, MD
Last Updated: 8/4/2021