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Year : 2005  |  Volume : 12  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 183-188

Pityriasis versicolor: Current concepts in Aetiology and Management

Department of Medicine, University College Hospital, Ibadan, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
A O Ogunbiyi
Department of Medicine, University College Hospital, Ibadan
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

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Pityriasis versicolor occurs commonly in this environment. It is characterised by fine scaly macular eruption and has a chronic relapsing nature. It is due to infection with malassezia. Recently with the aid of sequencing of the sub-unit rRNA and nuclear DNA complimentary studies, the malassezia species have been classified into seven. Malassezia (M) furfur, M. Symboidalis, M. Obtuse, M. globosa, M. restricta, M. sloofiae and M. pachydermatitis. M. globosa has been linked to development of pityriasis versicolor. Despite extensive work, factors which change the organism from its commensally to its pathogenic state are yet to be identified, although a genetic factor appears to be involved as familial cases occur. However factors such as hyper-hidrosis, depressed immunity, and occlusion of the skin, malnutrition and abuse of corticosteroids have been observed to be contributory. For many years topical therapy was the main stay of treatment that contributed to the high relapse after treatment. Presently management includes the use of both systemic and topical anti-fungals. Prophylactic treatment is now advocated in preventing relapses, which occurs commonly.

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