This patient information on Intertrigo is provided by John L. Meisenheimer, M.D. a board certified Dermatologist and skin care specialist based in Orlando, Florida. This information is not intended as a substitute for the medical advice or treatment of a dermatologist or other physician.


Intertrigo is a peculiar disorder of the skin that can occur at any age. Typically it appears as a moist, red or white eruption between the skin folds. It occurs more commonly under the breasts, in the groin, armpits, or between the folds of the belly. There may be some odor associated with the condition.

INTERTRIGOWhat causes it?

Moisture has a tendency to collect between the skin folds. Friction between the two moist opposing skin surfaces causes maceration of the skin. The macerated skin is then easily infected with bacteria and yeast.


Is it dangerous?

For the typical healthy person Intertrigo is a harmless disorder, but it can be very uncomfortable. It is not related to cancer and it does not involve internal organs. 

Can it be cured?

Treatment can often improve Intertrigo, but unless the provoking factors are eliminated (moisture and friction) repeat episodes will continue.

What home care should I use?

  1. Keep areas dry, you may want to blow dry 2-3 times a day. 
  2. An antiperspirant may also help keep skin dry in the folds once the area has healed. I recommend trying Certain-Dri Antiperspirant roll-on.
  3. Try to keep skin from contacting skin. If under the breasts a good support bra is needed. 
  4. Use medicated powder in the affected areas on a daily basis. This helps keep the areas dry. I have recommended Zeasorb AF powder for years. This medicated powder contains antifungals which suppress fungus growth.
  5. Secondary Yeast infections can be treated with Lamisil cream this does not need a prescription and is very effective for control.

INTERTRIGOWill it spread?

It stays localized to areas between skin folds.

It is contagious?

Intertrigo is not contagious, but the bacteria and yeast overgrowth may be infectious to susceptible people.

© John “Lucky” Meisenheimer, M.D.  2019