Common signs include:
- Hair loss, scaling, redness and crusting on the scalp
- Itchy scalp
- Lymph nodes in the back of the neck may increase in size
Occasionally, a more widespread, itchy rash with many small bumps on the face, arms, legs and less often the chest, abdomen and back may develop. This is NOT an allergic reaction but is a sign that the immune system is reacting to the infection. It is usually treated with antihistamines and topical corticosteroid medications.
Sometimes, children with ringworm develop a severe reaction to the infection in their scalp (called a kerion). The child will have swelling, pain and pus in the scalp; fever may also develop. If your child develops these symptoms, he or she should be seen by a primary care provider right away.
Your doctor may want to take a swab culture from your child’s scalp to confirm the diagnosis.