A 60-year-old woman presented with nonspecific dermatitis that was traced directly to tropical rat mites (Ornithonyssus bacoti) which occupied her rat-infested home. These mites and their rat hosts are prevalent in the United States and many parts of the world, and not infrequently man serves as a convenient alternate host. The dermatitis is usually not severe but may be persistent and puzzling diagnostically if mites are not suspected. Elimination of the mites and rats results in prompt resolution.
Hetherington GW, Holder WR, Smith EB. Rat Mite Dermatitis. JAMA. 1971;215(9):1499–1500. doi:10.1001/jama.1971.03180220079019
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