What is Scabies ?
Scabies is a skin infection caused by the mite Sarcoptes scabiei. The mite burrows into the skin, causing intense itching and a characteristic rash. The mites can be transmitted from person to person through close physical contact, or by sharing contaminated clothing, bedding, or towels.
What are The Symptoms of Scabies ?
Symptoms of scabies typically appear 2-6 weeks after exposure, and can include intense itching, especially at night, a rash with small red bumps or blisters, and burrow marks on the skin. The itching and rash can be widespread, affecting the entire body, but are most common on the wrists, elbows, and genital area.
Diagnosis of scabies is typically made through a physical exam and by examining skin scrapings under a microscope to look for mites or mite eggs. Treatment involves the use of prescription creams or lotions, such as permethrin or ivermectin, which kill the mites and their eggs.
Prevention of scabies involves avoiding close physical contact with infected individuals, using proper hygiene, and washing clothing, bedding, and towels in hot water and drying them on high heat to kill any mites. People who have been treated for scabies should avoid close contact with others until the mites have been eliminated, and should avoid sharing personal items such as clothing, towels, and bedding.