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Scabies (cont.)

What Are Scabies Treatment Options?

The first question affected people ask is how to get rid of scabies. Prescription medications (see below) are available, which kill the scabies mite and thus are known as scabicides.

  • Household members and sexual partners should be treated at the same time regardless of whether or not they have symptoms. Anyone who has had skin-to-skin contact with the patient in the past month should be treated. If a child with scabies attends day care or the affected person is institutionalized (such as in a nursing home or prison), then staff and others in close contact with the person should be treated. It is best to treat everyone simultaneously to minimize the risk that untreated people will reinfest treated people.
  • Occasionally, the scratched skin may become infected, and sores may contain pus or become red and warm. This is a separate condition from scabies and is usually a bacterial infection that develops due to scratching or irritation of the infested skin. If this occurs, it may be treated with an oral antibiotic or an antibiotic ointment applied to the area.
  • The itching and rash may last for up to two weeks after treatment. If the symptoms last longer, it is possible that the person has been reinfested or that the cream was not used appropriately. In some cases, the treatment is repeated after two weeks if symptoms have not gone away.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 2/22/2016

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Scabies »

Human scabies is an intensely pruritic skin infestation caused by the host-specific mite, Sarcoptes scabiei var hominis.

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