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Article
April 22, 1944

Scabies

JAMA. 1944;124(17):1230. doi:10.1001/jama.1944.02850170066032

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Abstract

In this pocket size manual Mellanby records his observations on several hundred cases of scabies observed in Great Britain, where the disease has become common during the war. He found that it was more prevalent among civilians than among service men and that physicians both military and civilian made at least a 25 per cent error in their diagnoses of the disease. The itching in scabies is apparently the result of a true sensitization, and volunteer patients were seen to harbor the organism for as long as two months before the development of symptoms. This fact may possibly explain the "misconception" that the disease is spread by bedding, communal towels, money, lavatory seats and ordinary social contacts. Rather it is prolonged intimate contact that accounts for the spread of the disease, and "indeed disinfestation of clothing and bedding may reasonably be dispensed with." Treatment with sulfur ointments and benzyl benzoate

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