In this spirit, I present the case of G.K. an 82 yo woman who I have been following for 6 months for a pustulo-vesicular dermatitis of her feet. It had features of dyshidrotic eczema at only minimal control.
On August 31, 2007 the patient was reevaluated. Clinically and dermoscopically there was a suggestion of burrows and a scabies prep was taken. To my great surprise there were 4 - 5 mites and numerous eggs and feces in the mineral oil mount. She has no eruption of arms or torso and her only itching was on her feet.
I took this image from the web, but it shows what I saw -- a number of mites and eggs.
Diagnosis: Localized Norwegian Scabies. This patient is confined to a wheelchair, but is active and alert. Further history revealed that her grown children had scabies three years ago and all were treated (as was this patient) with 5% permethrin cream. Seemingly, they all got better, but then three years later this patient has a localized form of Norwegian scabies. There are only one or two case reports of localized Norwegian scabies, and none in patients like this.
Treatment: The patient, her husband and son who all live together will be treated with Elimite. She will have treatments every other day for two weeks for her feet and complete skin treatments twice, one week apart. She will be seen back in two weeks. A culture was taken for the question of secondary infection (this grew out coagulase sensitive Staph and she was placed on an appropriate antibiotic).
Over the years, I have been humbled by scabies time and again. Scabies localized to the plantar aspects of the feet is just the latest incarnation.
Addendum: Here is an article which addresses localized Nowegian scabies co-authored by the prolix Ted Rosen. Our patient is presumable immunocompetent.
Localised genital Norwegian scabies in an AIDS patient.
Perna AG, Bell K, Rosen T. Sex Transm Infect 2004;80:72-3.
OBJECTIVES: We present a case of an AIDS patient with Norwegian scabies manifest
by a single, crusted plaque localised to the glans penis. METHODS: A 45 year old
man with AIDS presented to our clinic complaining of a red papular pruritic rash
on his abdomen and anterior thighs and a single, thick, crusted, non-pruritic
lesion on the penis. He had been treated with lindane topically prior to the
development of the penile lesion without resolution of the pruritus or red
papular lesions. A mineral oil preparation was obtained from the hyperkeratotic
penile lesion and revealed numerous mite eggs and faeces. RESULTS: The diagnosis
of localised, genital Norwegian scabies was made. The patient was treated with
ivermectin 200 micro g/kg per dose taken as two doses, 14 days apart, with
complete resolution of both pruritus and skin lesions. CONCLUSIONS: This patient
is the first known report of Norwegian scabies localised as a single lesion on
the penis. He was successfully treated with oral ivermectin monotherapy.