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You are here : 3-RX.com > Medical Encyclopedia > Diseases and Conditions > Scabies
      Category : Health Centers > Skin Conditions


Overview, Causes, & Risk Factors | Symptoms & Signs | Diagnosis & Tests | Prevention & Expectations | Treatment & Monitoring

Scabies is a skin infestation caused by the scabies mite. It often causes intense itchiness.

What is going on in the body?

The scabies mite, or Sarcoptes scabies, is specific to humans and spread by skin-to-skin contact. The mites live just below the skin's surface in an infected person. Generally, with the first episode of scabies, itching and skin lesions begin 1 to 1 1/2 months after infection. With reinfestation, symptoms often begin immediately. Scabies symptoms may continue for weeks or months prior to diagnosis and can continue for years if left untreated.

What are the causes and risks of the condition?

Scabies is caused when a person picks up the mites on his or her skin. Children under the age of 2 years are at high risk for scabies, as are their mothers. Soldiers, nursing home patients, and prison inmates in crowded conditions can also contract scabies readily.


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Scabies: Symptoms & Signs

Author: Lynn West, MD
Reviewer: Eileen McLaughlin, RN, BSN
Date Reviewed: 07/27/01

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