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Scabies Symptoms

Once infestation takes place, scabies symptoms can take four to six weeks to develop in a person who has never previously had the condition. The symptoms usually begin slowly, with a minor rash and itching that tends to be worse at night. Other common symptoms of scabies include pimple-like irritations, intense itching, sores caused by scratching, and small rounded lumps.

An Introduction to Scabies Signs and Symptoms

When a person becomes infected with the scabies mite (Sarcoptes scabiei), the amount of time before symptoms appear can vary. For someone who has never had the condition, it can take four to six weeks for symptoms to begin. For someone who has had them before, symptoms of scabies can begin within several days.

Common Symptoms of Scabies

Scabies symptoms often begin slowly, with a minor rash and itching that tends to worsen at night. Scratching spreads the mites to other areas, and the symptoms generally worsen after several weeks. Common symptoms can include:
  • Intense itching, especially at night and over most of the body.
  • Pimple-like irritations, burrows, or rash on the skin.
  • Sores on the body caused by scratching. These sores can sometimes become infected with bacteria.
  • Scaling and redness caused by the scratching.
  • Small, rounded lumps (often on the penis and scrotum) that may remain for several weeks after scabies treatment.
The pimple-like irritations, burrows, or rash on the skin are typically found on the:
  • Wrists
  • Elbows
  • Knees
  • Penis
  • Buttocks
  • Breasts
  • Shoulder blades
  • Webbing between the fingers.
(Click Scabies Pictures to see photos illustrating such rashes.)
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