Scabies is an infectious parasitic dermatopathy which is the result of the mite of scabiei and is transmitted between humans through direct or indirect contact. The mite of scabies shows preference to skin areas which are thin and hairless. On the contrary, it avoids areas of high hair density most probably as they inhibit its course on the skin during burrowing.
It is characterized by itching and burrowing formation which develop mainly in the area of the finger webs, the palms, the wrists and the knee joints. The burrows are formed by female mites which penetrate the skin and deposit their eggs of which new parasites will emerge. The patient should be particularly meticulous in following the instructions. All the members of his/ her family should undergo treatment along with the patient. No commitment to treatment is necessary for individuals who had any casual contact with the patient, such as a handshake. To be on the safe side, linen, underwear and all garments used by the patient and his family should be disinfected and dry cleaned at high temperature.
From the beginning of symptoms of scabies and until it is diagnosed there is usually a period of time of intense itching. The patient should not use hard sponges and brushes during bathing. The patient is relieved of the symptoms of scabies within three days from the beginning of treatment and ceases to transmit the infection about 24 hours after the completion of the treatment with an effective anti-scabies agent.
Scabies deformities are not observed either on the face or the back or the scalp. Treatment should be extended to all individuals who live or come in close contact with the patient. Regular washing of hands, daily bathing and avoidance of other people’s garments can prevent scabies.