Tinea capitis is fungal infection of the hair and scalp. It is spread by close contact (especially in schools and households) and may also be spread indirectly by hairdressers. The clinical appearance of scalp ringworm is highly variable from a mild diffuse scaling with no hair loss (similar to dandruff) to the more typical appearance of circular scaly patches in the scalp with associated alopecia and broken hairs. As the hosts immune response increases, a few pustules may appear and an exudate may be present. At worst, a full-blown 'kerion' develops; a boggy swollen mass with copious quantities of discharging pus and exudate accompanied by severe alopecia.