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Candidiasis, often called yeast infection or thrush, is a type of infectious disease. It is a fungal infection (mycosis). The disease is caused by any of the Candida species of yeast. Candida albicans is the most common species.



Candida yeasts are common in most people. The yeast is usually controlled in the body. When the yeast grows without control, an infection happens.

A weakened, unhealthy, or young immune system may allow candidiasis to develop.

HIV/AIDS, cancer treatments, steroids, stress and not enough nutrients may cause candidiasis. Antibiotic and steroid use are the most common reason for uncontrolled yeast.

Antibiotic kills some bacteria, and changes the balance of microorganisms in the body. This may allow the yeast to multiply.

Candidiasis in the throat and mouth


Esophageal candidiasis is an infection of the esophagus by Candida albicans. The disease happens in unhealthy people. Sometimes people will get the infection when they are treated with chemotherapy. People with AIDS can also get this infection more often.

One sign of esophageal candidiasis is painful swallowing. Weight loss can happen when a person has esophageal candidiasis for a long time.

Human tongue infected with oral candidiasis
Human tongue infected with oral candidiasis



Candida may appear as thick white or cream-coloured areas on mucosal membranes. The infected mucosa of the mouth may look inflamed. In babies the condition is called thrush. For babies, it is usually painless and causes no pain. Adults may experience discomfort or burning sensation.

Body parts

In healthy persons, candidiasis is usually a very small infection of the skin or mucous membranes.[1] These areas include:

Candidiasis is a very common cause of vaginal irritation, or vaginitis. It can also occur on the penis or scrotum. In unhealthy patients, the Candida infection can affect the esophagus. It could get everywhere in the body. This would cause a much more serious health condition, a state called candidemia.

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