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​Scabies (Sarcoptes)

ScabiesScabies is an intensely pruritic disorder induced by a delayed type hypersensitivity reaction to infestation of the skin by the mite Sarcoptes scabiei.
The biology of the mite, the clinical aspects and diagnosis of scabies infestations as well as the treatment of choice with 5% permethrin dermal cream and the use of scabicides based on other chemical substances is reviewed. Resistance of scabies mites to ivermectin and permethrin has been reported (Mumcuoglu & Gilead, 2006, 2008; Mumcuoglu et al. 2009).
The diagnosis of scabies is established clinically and confirmed by identifying mites or eggs by microscopic examination of scrapings from the skin or by surface microscopy using a dermatoscope. Reflectance-mode confocal microscopy is a novel technique used for noninvasive imaging of skin structures and lesions at a resolution compatible to that of conventional histology. Recently, the technique was employed for the confirmation of the clinical diagnosis of scabies. We demonstrate the first ever documentation of a larva moving freely inside the skin of a patient infected with scabies (Levi et al. 2011, 2012).


Levi, A, K.Y. Mumcuoglu, A. Ingber & C.D. Enk. 2011. Assessment of Sarcoptes scabiei viability in vivo by Reflectance Confocal Microscopy. Lasers Med. Sci. DOI 10.1007/s10103-011-0894-1.
Levi, A., K. Y. Mumcuoglu, A. Ingber & C. D. Enk. 2012. Detection of living Sarcoptes scabiei larvae by reflectance mode confocal microscopy in the skin of a patient with crusted scabies. J. Biomed. Optics 17, Issue 6.
Mumcuoglu, K.Y. & L. Gilead. 2006. Recommendations for the treatment of scabies infestations. Isr. Med. Assoc. J. 8: 196-199.
Mumcuoglu, K.Y. & L. Gilead. 2008. Treatment of scabies infestations. Parasite 15: 248-251.
Mumcuoglu, K.Y., L. Gilead & A. Ingber. 2009. New Insights in pediculosis and scabies. Exp. Rev. Dermatol. 4: 285-302.

Additional publications on this subject:

Rotz, A. von, K.Y. Mumcuoglu, J. Pohlenz, M. Suter, M. Brossard & D. Barth. 1983. Experimental infestation of cattle with permanent and temporary ectoparasites and their influence on leather quality (in German). Zbl. Vet. Med. 30:397-407.
Rufli, T. & K.Y. Mumcuoglu. 1981. Dermatological Entomology. 20. Sarcoptidae / Itch mites (in German). Schweiz. Rundschau Med. 70:414-429.