- Scabies is an itchy, highly contagious skin disease caused by an infestation by the itch mite Sarcoptes scabiei.
- Direct skin-to-skin contact is the mode of transmission.
- A severe and relentless itch is the predominant symptom of scabies.
- Sexual contact is the most common form of transmission among sexually active young people, and scabies has been considered by many to be a sexually transmitted disease (STD), although not all cases are transmitted sexually.
- Signs and symptoms of scabies include a skin rash composed of small red bumps and blisters that affects specific areas of the body. Other symptoms can include tiny red burrows on the skin and relentless itching. The itch leads to frequent scratching, which may predispose the skin to secondary infections.
- Treatment includes oral or topical scabicidal drugs.
- Over-the-counter remedies are not effective in eliminating scabies.
Reviewed on 1/26/2015
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