Erythrasma Inguinal – The List of Causes and Symptoms


To date, erythrasma in the groin is the second most common disease of the large skin folds. It belongs to actinomycosis, since recent studies have shown that the pathogen Corynebacterium minutissimum is a special microorganism belonging to fungi and bacteria. The course is almost always long, relapsing with occasional exacerbations in the hot season. Diagnosis is not difficult and in most cases it may be enough to examine the clinical picture.


The main cause of erythrasma inguinal – Corynebacterium minutissimum, which is localized in the scales of the epidermis. But, there are a number of predisposing factors that play an important role in the development of the disease:

  1. overweight (some doctors call erythrasma a disease of obese people);
  2. excessive sweating;
  3. non-compliance with personal hygiene;
  4. work associated with elevated temperatures (hot shops, mines, etc.);
  5. work related to high humidity (baths, pools, etc.).

Also, separately, it is necessary to pay attention to the fact that erythrasma is a low-contact disease that is very rarely transmitted even through close bodily contact.


In 95% of cases, there are no subjective feelings during erythrasma. Only concomitant diseases (hyperhidrosis), a hot season and disregard for personal hygiene can cause inflammatory processes that can be accompanied by blisters, bubbles, cracks and soak.

The main symptom of uncomplicated erythrasma inguinal – red or brown spots on the skin, localized in places of large folds. The most common localization of lesions:

  • groin area;
  • inner thighs;
  • axillary hollows;
  • under the mammary glands (in women);
  • oral area;
  • near the navel;
  • in the folds of the abdomen;
  • scrotum (in males).

At the initial stage, the size of the spots is 2-3 cm, over the course of the process they can increase several times (in some cases reaching palm sizes and more). In advanced cases, there may be huge lesions that result from the merging of spots with each other. The form is round, the surface is smooth (rarely can peeling and scales join).

Photo of Erythrasma in the Groin

Diagnosis and Treatment

Erythrasma is most often confused with groin athlete’s disease and smooth skin rubromycosis in the groin, which have an identical clinical picture. From a medical point of view, the differences lie in the fact that erythrasma is bacteriosis and epidermis and rubromycosis are fungal diseases of the skin.

For diagnosis, it is enough to examine the patient’s spots and glow them under the Wood’s lamp. Erythrasma will always glow red-coral due to porphyrin, which is produced by corynebacterium. In rare cases, microscopic examination of scrapings and scales from lesions can be carried out to exclude fungal diseases.

The treatment of the initial stage and forms that are not aggravated by inflammatory processes is carried out using the following means and preparations:

  • Clotrimazole (2 times a day for 1 week);
  • Erythromycin ointment 5% (2 times a day for 2 weeks);
  • Salicylic alcohol 5% (treatment of lesions 1 time per day during the week);
  • Fusiderm (2 times a day during the week);
  • Exoderil (applying the cream on the spots 2 times a day for 2 weeks);
  • Erythromycin (by mouth, prescribed by a doctor);
  • Fucidin;
  • Bepanthen;
  • Triderm.

Unfortunately, not all men and women turn to a dermatologist in time with their problem. There are many cases when erythrasma is sick for several years and only the accession of secondary infections forces the patient to seek help from a doctor.

Erythrasma prophylaxis includes the following activities:

  • weight adjustment;
  • enhanced personal hygiene;
  • thorough drying of the skin after water procedures;
  • wiping all the folds of baby cream;
  • the use of baby powders in the hot season;
  • treatment of concomitant diseases – hyperhidrosis, etc.

With the appearance of diaper rash, you can use solutions of aniline dyes. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle (exercise, running, strength exercises), body hygiene and proper diet are the best prevention of erythrasma and other diseases of the inguinal-femoral folds.

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