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Q. I notice lot of brown patches below my left armpit with stinky sweat. What could it be?

Answered by
Dr. Subhash Kashyap
and medically reviewed by Dr. Vinodhini. J
This is a premium question & answer published on May 08, 2020

Hello doctor,

I am a 42-year-old male, non-smoker and non-alcoholic.

For the last two months, I am noticing lots of brown patches below my armpits of the left hand and nothing much on the right hand. And off late I could sense I am sweating (armpits) which I never had before. Will you please consult on this issue?



Welcome to

What I can make out from your history is that you are having brown patches over the left armpit for two months. I want to know no other symptoms in this lesion like if they pain or burn? Are they increasing in size or same since their start? Any other family member having such lesions?

Please send a clear photo.

Regarding follow up:

Send history as asked and photo.

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Thank you doctor,

No, I do not have any pain or burn. But I feel sweating sometimes and it stinks a bit. It has not increased nor decreased in its size. I am staying in abroad for the last seven years, and I visit my family only once in a year.

Not sure, if it is related, some eight months back I used a public washing machine, but I was using it for the last seven years. I have attached my picture.



Welcome to

After going through your history and images (attachment removed to protect patient identity), I concluded that it is tinea versicolor, a fungal infection.


Avoid sweating.

Clean with Ketoconazole soap daily.

Dry apparels in sun.

Take capsule Itraconazole 400 mg stat (single dose) after a meal. Repeat after three weeks. Use Sertaconazole cream twice daily for three weeks. This fungus is a normal resident of our body but increased sweating and weight gain may lead to patch formation. With medication fungus is killed and controlled but lesion may take a few weeks to recover.

I hope this helps.

The Probable causes:

Sweating and fungus.

Investigations to be done:

KOH if possible.

Differential diagnosis:

Acanthosis nigricans.

Probable diagnosis:

Tinea Versicolor.

Treatment plan:


Preventive measures:

Avoid sweating.

Regarding follow up:

After four weeks.

Was this answer helpful?


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