Person-to-person contact and contact with contaminated towels and clothes causes jock itch, explains Mayo Clinic. Risk factors include immune system dysfunction, wearing tight underwear, obesity and heavy sweating. The condition can also develop in people with atopic dermatitis and other skin conditions.
Jock itch is tinea cruris, a fungal infection that affects the skin on the genital region, inner thighs and buttocks, according to Mayo Clinic. It begins as a rash in the crease of the groin and spreads outward onto the upper thigh. Symptoms include itchiness and redness on the warm and moist parts of the body.
Jock itch is treated with topical antifungal medications that include terbinafine, miconazole, clotrimazole, ketoconazole and econazole, applied twice daily for two weeks, explains The Merck Manual Professional Edition. People with athlete’s foot and jock itch require treatment for both conditions because athlete’s foot can cause jock itch to come back, according to Drugs.com. Over-the-counter creams, such as Sarna lotion, alleviate itching.
Jock itch is a self-limited condition, and complications are rare, explains MedicineNet. Scratching and rubbing the affected area can lead to secondary skin infections, abscess formation and cellulitis. Other complications include temporary skin discoloration and skin darkening. Permanent scarring does not usually occur.