Scabies Home > Facts About Scabies

Most people have heard of scabies, but do you understand what it is exactly, what causes it, or how it is treated? Here are some important facts about scabies to keep in mind:
  • Scabies is an infestation of the skin with the microscopic mite Sarcoptes scabiei.
  • The mite is spread by direct, prolonged, skin-to-skin contact with a person. Casual contact, like a handshake, is not enough.
  • Symptoms usually begin slowly, with a mild rash, and slowly get worse over several weeks.
  • There is no home remedy for scabies. You must see a healthcare provider for proper diagnosis and treatment.
(Click Scabies to learn more, including how this condition is diagnosed and treated, other symptoms, and what you need to know about the more severe form, Norwegian scabies.)
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Last reviewed by: Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last updated/reviewed:
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