Candidiasis, also known as a yeast infection
, is a common fungal infection that occurs when there is an overgrowth of the fungus Candida
is always present in the body in small amounts. However, when an imbalance occurs, such as when the normal acidity of the vagina changes or when the hormonal balance changes, Candida
can multiply. When that happens, symptoms of candidiasis appear.
Women with Candida infections usually experience genital itching or burning, with or without a "cottage cheese-like" vaginal discharge. Males with genital candidiasis may experience an itchy rash on the penis.
Nearly 75 percent of all adult women have had at least one genital yeast infection
in their lifetime. On rare occasions, men may also experience genital candidiasis. Candida
infections occur more frequently and more severely in people with weakened immune systems.
There are some other conditions that may put a woman at risk for genital candidiasis, including:
- Diabetes mellitus
- Use of broad-spectrum antibiotics
- Use of corticosteroid medications.