I wrestled in high school. As an all-out aggressive effort for six minutes on the rubberized mat, S W E A T was the name of the game. Guy’s showers at our school were in “the dungeon”… a dark dank cement floor locker room that would’ve been perfect for growing shiitake mushrooms. Signs on the door professed that it also served as a fallout shelter if anybody ever decided to drop the A bomb on Michigan. If the air-raid sirens ever sounded, the students were supposed to walk single file into the dungeon where we would all survive.

A much more dreadful issue threatened those of us who challenged the dungeon darkness for bare-footed showers. I contracted athlete’s foot from the invisible microbes of fungus growing in that dimly lit basement. Not only did it itch and burn, but my ego was shattered when my mom made me wear flip flops to shower in the dungeon!

Fungus is an opportunistic organism. It thrives in warm moist dark areas and grabs a hold of unsuspecting hosts.

I thought I was Superman, never again suffering this malady until recently. My wife and I visited Minnesota farmland on vacation, and stayed in a bicyclist’ hostel in the basement of a barn. I took a nice shower that cost 50 cents and used all of that hot water. Two weeks later, the burn and itch struck between my toes. Fortunately, a bit of self-care cures the stuff. A short research led me to keep my feet dry, use wicking socks rather than cotton, powder my shoes, and apply the cream.

The intense itch did remind me that I had had a similar peristomal irritation in the past. Yeast somehow found me to be a good dark moist warm host. I changed the appliance, applied stoma-adhesive powder, kept the area dry, and that fungus left me… once in TEN years!! Not too bad. Diabetics with extra sugar to get rid of have a tougher time because yeast loves sugar…

I read that to stay free of yeast, wicking material around the appliance would keep me dry and make it harder for yeast to grow.

Let out a big cheer for StomaCloak!! Keeps you dry by wicking away perspiration and small leaks!!

Fend off the fungus!!

By Dr. Joseph Salisz, MD A urologist with a Ostomy

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