Scabies is a contagious skin disease that can spread quickly if left untreated and without proper hygiene and sanitation. Thanks to the improvement of sanitary and hygienic standards, an increase in culture, material well-being and health literacy of the population, the implementation of preventive measures by the medical service, the timely detection, isolation and treatment of patients - in our time, scabies has not become widespread and disappeared as a mass disease. However, there are isolated cases and sometimes outbreaks of scabies, which, although temporary, still oblige the population to be vigilant.
The disease is caused by an itch mite, which resembles a turtle when viewed under a microscope. The length and width of the female is about 0.75 mm, the male is 1/3 smaller than the female. Infection is caused only by females, since after fertilization of the female, the male dies, and the female penetrates into the surface layer of the skin, where she lays a tunnel parallel to the surface of the skin - an itch passage, along which she lays eggs. For 1-2 months of life, the female lays up to 50 eggs, of which scabies mites hatch after 3-4 days. Outside the skin, the female dies within a few days. After 3-7 weeks, young ticks become sexually mature.
The disease occurs at any time, somewhat more often in the autumn-winter period. Infection with scabies occurs through direct contact with patients, when using his bed linen, clothing, toys, etc., in conditions of close household contact. The factors predisposing to the disease are overcrowding (in the room, carriages, tents, etc.), rare washing in the bath, infrequent change of linen, violations and other sanitary and hygienic rules, sexual promiscuity.
The incubation period of the disease, that is, the time from infection to the manifestations of the disease, with scabies: from 5-12 days to 1 month or more. The first sign of the onset of the disease is severe itching, usually appearing at night. Paired and scattered punctate nodular-vesicular rashes, scabies, abrasions from skin scratching.
Small vesicles and nodules usually appear where the female enters the stratum corneum. Then the contents of the bubble shrink into a crust. As the female moves in the thickness of the stratum corneum, according to her advance, a slightly rising filamentous ridge is formed on the skin surface, which ends at the opposite end with a fresh bubble, where the tick is currently located. Subsequently, a narrow linear crust or a dark-colored scratch appears in place of this roller. This is the so-called itch move.
The accession of a purulent infection leads to the development of a complication of scabies - pyoderma (pustular skin disease). In such cases, scabies is more difficult to recognize. Contamination of the skin, calculations, physical and mental fatigue, overheating and cooling predispose to the occurrence of pyoderma. A purulent infection is carried into the skin and with a tick bite.
Other complications of scabies are dermatitis, an inflammation of the skin caused by various anti-scabies. In these cases, redness appears on the patient's skin, dryness, peeling, itching, swelling and eczematization are noted, that is, the attachment of signs characteristic of eczema: very small vesicles, oozing, inflammation, swelling of certain areas of the skin, small abrasions and crusts, in further development in some areas of thickening of the skin (infiltration), etc. The increased vulnerability of the skin to various, even weak, irritants develops.The development of dermatitis and eczematized forms of scabies is facilitated by the intolerance of some patients to antiparasitic anti-scabies treatment, constant mechanical irritation of the skin (scratching due to severe itching), neurotic disorders due to itching and related insomnia.
To recognize scabies, it is important to take into account the predominant, above-mentioned, location of rashes (point bubbles and nodules, scabies, crusts, abrasions), the nocturnal nature of very pronounced itching, the appearance of itching in other family members. Sometimes, to establish a diagnosis, a laboratory study is carried out using a microscope to detect the scabies mite or its waste products (eggs, excrement). Scabies is treated as directed by a doctor. It is important, along with strict adherence to the correct methods of treatment, the simultaneous conduct of thorough disinsection, as well as washing with boiling and ironing of clothes, linen, bedding, etc. Finding patients in groups without treatment creates a threat of infection to others. The longer the patient stays without treatment, the more common and complicated forms develop, the more difficult the disease is to treat.
With uncomplicated scabies, treatment lasts no more than 10 days, with complicated scabies - at least 3 weeks. The reasons for unsuccessful treatment may be insufficient intensity of treatment, limitation of treatment only in places of rashes, a rare change of linen, lack of final disinfection, insufficient control over the results of treatment. For early detection of scabies, you should immediately consult a doctor when itching occurs. In cases where scabies is diagnosed, it is necessary to strictly follow the doctor's prescription.