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A Journal on Pediatrics, Neonatology, Adolescent Medicine,
Child and Adolescent Psychiatry

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Minerva Pediatrica 2010 June;62(3):329-32

language: Italian

A sign of the changing times: neonatal scabies

Guerci S., Cappellaro E., Contratti M., Corna A., Fazi M. C., Orini S., Sassi G., Tedoldi S., Vaccaro T., Volpini S., Colombo M.

1 Unità Operativa di Pediatria e Neonatologia, Presidio Ospedaliero di Manerbio e Gavardo Brescia, Italia
2 Ambulatorio di Dermatologia, Presidio Ospedaliero di Manerbio, Brescia, Italia


Scabies is an itchy-parasitic cutaneous infection; it can spread from person to person directly or through clothing, sheets or mattresses. The incidence had fallen a lot during the last ten years, but recently it is growing up again; this is due to immigration of people coming from Countries where local hygienic and social conditions are very poor. In this contest it is more frequent to observe the infection in pediatric age, sometimes also newborn. In this particular case the diagnosis can be more difficult because the clinical manifestations are different from pathognomonic lesions we usually see in adult age. We report the clinical case of a newborn, 30-day-old, born in Italy from an Indian family. When the baby was admitted in our department she looked in good physical conditions but she presented a pustular dermatitis all over the body, scalp excluded. The presence in the mother of typical skin lesion and baby’s eosinophilia at blood test, induced us to suspect the diagnosis of scabies. However, both the search for acarus at optical microscope on a skin sample obtained with “scarification” and clinical response to a treatment with PAF, were unsuccessful. Moreover, we found in the baby a persisent trombopenia; this fact induced us to think of other hypothesis. Finally the child’s positive response to permethrina topical treatment and normalization of the number of platelets let us confirm the initial diagnosis of scabies.

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