Characteristics of scabies

Scabies is a contagious skin disease caused by the tubes that builds under the skin the parasite of scabies (Sarcoptes scabiei). This is a very small mite, about 0,3 mm long.

It affects people from different classes and ethnic groups all over the world. It is a very old skin disease, since it is been attacking Man more than 2500 ago.

The contagion of scabies can be very diverse. Any situation that permits the contact of the parasite with a person can produce it. Incubation takes generally from 14 to 60 days in people with no previous contact with the disease. Those having been infected before may take only from 1 to 4 days to present the symptoms.

Scabies can be responsible for secondary skin infections caused by scratching the itching zone. However, people being infected for the first time may not show itching during the first days of contagion. People with subsequent infections generally feel itchy little time after being reinfected.

Some patients may show a special type of scabies called Norwegian scabies. It is a more serious form of scabies that affects people with certain skin diseases, such as leprosy, or those having an impaired immune system (people being treated with chemotherapy against cancer, people with ADIDS, etc) Patients with Norwegian scabies usually present scaly painful skin and big crusting areas on the body.

Symptoms of scabies

The main symptoms are: Presence of vesicles and barrows in the skin, extreme itching especially between the fingers, armpits, wrists, elbows, genitals. Increased pain during the night when going to bed. Sores on the skin produced by scratching, infected pustules, etc. Babies generally show sores on the soles of feet, palms of the hands and face.

Causes of scabies

Scabies is produced by a parasite that makes its furrows under the skin. It lays its eggs there. The movements of this parasite under the skin together with the reactions produced because of its secretions is the reason for the intense itching that mainly characterizes this infection.

Although it occurs in all parts of the world and can affect to any people, no matter what social, personal or racial condition, scabies tends to be more frequently seen in poor countries where poor personal hygiene favors the establishment of the parasite an the reinfection cases.

The most common causes of infection are the following:

- Contact with an object infected with scabies (towel, clothes, keyboards, pencils, caps, etc)

- Contact with the skin of an infected person: this type of contact is most likely to happen that the previous one.

Diagnosis and treatment of scabies

In front of possible symptoms of scabies, a visit to the doctor is recommended. Scabies has to be properly diagnosed in order to differentiate it from other skin diseases that may produce similar symptoms: syphilis, dermatitis, skin allergy reactions, or other skin parasites as lice or flea.

Diagnosis is mainly based on skin examination. This can reveal the presence of skin furrows. Most of the times, it requires a microscopic examination of a sample taken by scraping the affected area.

Conventional treatment of scabies is done by means of topical (permethrin, malathion or lindane) or oral medications (Ivermectin)

The natural treatment of scabies involves using a series of natural resources that can contribute to eradicate it. They can also improve its symptoms.

punto rojo More information about scabies natural treatment in the listing above.

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