A. This highly contagious infestation is caused by the Sarcoptes scabiei (0.2-0.4 mm in length). The infestation is transmitted by intimate contact or by contact with infested clothing. The female mite burrows into the skin, and after 1 month, severe pruritus develops. A multiform eruption may develop, characterized by papules, vesicles, pustules, urticarial wheals, and secondary infections on the hands, wrists, elbows, belt line, buttocks, genitalia, and outer feet.
B. Diagnosis is confirmed by visualization of burrows and observation of parasites, eggs, larvae, or red fecal compactions under microscopy.
C. Treatment. Permethrin 5% cream (Elimite) is massaged in from the neck down and remove by washing after 8 hours.
References: See page 311.
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