The main symptom of ringworm fungus, also known as tinnea, is an itchy red rash with sharply defined edges, MedlinePlus says. These rashes often have patches with normal skin tone in the center, which makes them look like rings. The rashes from ringworm fungus sometimes blister and ooze. Ringworm fungus in the nails can cause them to thicken and crumble, while ringworm fungus on the scalp can cause hair loss.
Ringworm fungus is a highly contagious fungal infection of the skin, explains MedlinePlus. It can spread via skin contact and contact with contaminated items such as clothing, combs and shower surfaces. Cats and other pets can also spread the ringworm fungus. The organism survives best in warm and damp locations, and it can infect a person more easily via minor injuries to the skin or nails.
Treating ringworm fungus requires daily washing of bedclothes, keeping the skin clean and dry, and applying topical medications, MedlinePlus notes. Such medications include ointments, creams and powders with anti-fungal agents. If these medications are ineffective, stronger prescription medications such as ketoconazole may be needed. Excessive scratching can lead to secondary skin infections that require antibiotics to treat. If a person with ringworm fungus has pets, the pets may also need treatment.