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Reaction to study analysing a ringworm outbreak in Spanish hairdressing salons

A study to be published in the journal Actas Dermo-Sifiliográficas analyses an outbreak of ringworm that has affected hundreds of Spanish adolescents in the last two years.

19/01/2023 - 14:04 CET

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Ana Alastruey - tiña EN

Ana Alastruey

Researcher at the Reference and Research Laboratory in Mycology, National Microbiology Centre, Instituto de Salud Carlos III

Science Media Centre Spain

Dermatophytes are filamentous fungi that cause infections called tinea infections that can be transmitted from person to person or from animal to person. These fungi need keratin to grow, a protein that is present in human skin, hair or nail cells. The recently reported outbreak in Spain has been linked to the Trichophyton tonsurans species.  

At the Mycology Reference and Research Laboratory of the National Microbiology Centre of the Carlos III Institute of Health, we have not yet seen an increase in the number of T. tonsurans strains (or dermatophytes) that we receive for analysis, although we are aware that in recent years an increase in antifungal resistant strains has been described in this group of fungi. There are several reports in the scientific literature of similar outbreaks related to hairdressing salons; infections are generally not serious and transmission is automatically stopped if hygiene recommendations are followed and equipment used is sterilised. 

"I have received speaking fees from Gilead and Pfizer".

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