Scabies is an itchy, contagious infestation caused by mites that burrow under the skin. Little red bumps develop in the skin folds, between the fingers, around the belt line and in the genital region. It is transmitted by close personal contact, as well as contact with infested clothing and/or linens.
Treatment consists of either a topical cream called Permethrin or an oral medication called Ivermectin. When prescribed, patients are instructed to apply the cream from the neck down, leaving it on the skin for up to 8 hours. Patients then repeat the treatment one week later. If an oral medication is chosen, patients take one dose on an empty stomach and repeat one week later. Patients are also prescribed a topical steroid to control the itching. Patients are instructed to wash clothing and linens in hot water. Often times, a patient may experience itching or pruritus for up to for up to a month after the initial infestation has been initially treated. Treatment of everyone in the household is required to eliminate the infestation.