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J Korean Med Assoc > Volume 52(11); 2009 > Article
Oh and Ahn: Drug Therapy of Dermatophytosis


Dermatophytosis is a superficial infection caused by dermatophytes, a group of taxonomically related fungi. Dematophytes have the ability to form molecular attachments to keratin, use it as a source of nutrients, and then colonize keratinized tissues, including the stratum corneum of the epidermis, hair, nails, and the horny tissues of animals. For an effective treatment of dermatophytosis, antifungal agents must be able to reach dermatophytes in the keratin layer. The concentration of these drugs must also be maintained above therapeutic level for a sustained period of time. Newer oral antifungal agents, itraconazole, terbinafine, and fluconazole are widely used because of the improved therapeutic efficacy and an acceptable adverse effects profile. However, the drugs have different amount of the dose and period of administration, and the interaction of each individual agent is unique in each type of drugs. Therefore, an extreme caution must be exercised during the prescription of these antifungal agents.


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Figure 1
A typical dermatophytic lesion and hyphae.


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