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Clinical Summary

Intertrigo is a dermatitis occurring on opposed surfaces of skin, such as the creases of the neck, folds of the groin and armpit, or a panniculus. It is characterized by a tender, red patch or plaque with a moist, macerated surface. The juxtaposed skin surfaces create a chronic friction, and this can easily become suprainfected with candida, fungal, or bacterial infections.

Management and Disposition

Local care, empiric topical antifungal treatment, and good personal hygiene are recommended.


  1. The nature of the intertriginous areas makes them a high risk for secondary infection.

  2. Potent topical corticosteroids should be avoided because of the risk for striae and atrophy.

FIGURE 13.103

Intertrigo of the Panniculus. In this dramatic case, the weight of the pannus creates constant friction on the abdominal wall. This leads to erythema and tissue breakdown. This patient also had fever, suggesting secondary infection. (Photo contributor: Lawrence B. Stack, MD.)

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