Ketoconazole cream treats fungal infection on the skin. The medication interferes with the development of the cell membrane in the fungus, causing the death of the fungus. Side effects of the cream include an increase in skin irritation such as burning or itching. Ketoconazole treats several related fungal infections.
Tinea pedis, commonly referred to as Athlete's foot, causes burning, itching and pain between the toes. The fungus thrives in warm and moist environments. Applying ketoconazole cream--once a day for up to six weeks--helps to get rid of the fungal infection, according to Medline Plus. When applying the cream, it should cover the rash and the surrounding area. Continuing to use the medication for two weeks after the symptoms disappear helps prevent a reoccurrence of the infection, states RxList.com.
Similar to Athlete's foot, tinea cruris is a fungal infection affecting the area around the genitals and the inner thighs. The infection, often called jock itch, appears as a reddened, itchy, ring-shaped rash. The ketoconazole cream, applied to the skin daily for up to six weeks, treats the infection. Continuing to use it for an additional two weeks after the initial improvement of the rash helps reduce the chance of a possible reoccurrence.
Tinea versicolor is another fungal skin infection that causes dark patches to appear. Medline Plus states that one treatment with ketoconazole shampoo will treat the infection, but the cream normally requires two weeks of use, according to RxList.com. It may take longer for the skin to return to normal color after treating the fungus. The tinea versicolor can return after treatment, requiring an additional application of ketoconazole.
Cutaneous candidiasis is a skin infection caused by yeast. Most often, this skin infection appears as a diaper rash in infants. Ketoconazole treats the rash caused by candida. You may be able to combine the medicine with an traditional diaper rash cream.
Impetigo, Eczema and Psoriasis
Skin conditions such as impetigo, eczema and psoriasis may improve with ketoconazole cream. Impetigo is a skin infection caused by bacteria and causes blisters on the skin. Eczema causes dry and itchy skin, most often due to allergies. Psoriasis, commonly found on the scalp, elbows and knees, causes itching and areas of thickened red skin. A physician will help determine the length of time to use the cream for these conditions.