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Infectious skin disease: supply bottlenecks for scabies


Oral medication for scabies is becoming scarce

Many people think that scabies has long been a thing of the past in Germany, but even today the itchy skin disease occurs again and again. Recently, there were several cases of illness in North Rhine-Westphalia. In the western German state, the only oral medication for scabies is becoming scarce.

Many people considered scabies to be extinct

Scabies was considered extinct in Germany for a long time. But she had never completely disappeared from the scene. There were times when the itchy skin disease returned. Recently, there were several cases of the contagious disease in North Rhine-Westphalia. For example, a 10-year-old girl from Cologne recently got infected with it. According to a media report, the only oral medication for scabies in NRW is becoming scarce.

Skin disease is caused by itch mites

Scabies is a parasitic skin disease that is accompanied by blisters, red pustules, itchy rash and pain.

The uncomfortable complaints are caused by itch mites, the droppings and eggs in the skin of those affected, where they trigger allergic reactions. This then triggers the severe itching that gave the disease its name.

"Scabies (mites) are transmitted from person to person through close contact, especially with bed warmth," reports the City of Bonn's health department on its website.

“The areas of skin between the fingers and behind the ears, as well as in the folds of the wrists, elbows, armpits, belt area, knee and feet, are particularly affected. Sometimes you can see the mite ducts in the skin, ”said the experts.

"Rarely are transmission routes through infected laundry, clothing, blankets and pets."

Skin disease is easy to treat

According to health experts, the disease is easy to treat. There are various preparations on the market for treating scabies. Permethrin, a cream that is applied to the entire surface of the body, is the agent of choice.

According to experts, doctors only resort to alternatives in exceptional cases. One of them is the drug Scabioral. But according to a media report, this is currently scarce in NRW.

As the "Rheinische Post" (RP) reports online, Scabioral is only produced in Germany by one manufacturer (Infectopharm) - and apparently it has not been able to deliver for weeks.

According to RP, the drug is a tablet that usually destroys all itch mites in the body when taken once.

"The drug works very reliably and is especially helpful for children, for whom the use of creams is often not sufficient," Heinrich Rasokat, senior physician at the dermatology clinic at the University Clinic in Cologne, told the newspaper.

Delivery difficulties due to increased demand

An RP survey showed that not a single pharmacy surveyed had the product in stock. So you can't order it, because the manufacturer has had delivery problems since September. This apparently has to do with the increased demand.

“Of course there are still alternative treatment methods. Especially in less severe cases, creams are given first, not tablets. But Scabioral is very helpful, especially for severe scabies and children, ”says Rasokat, according to RP.

The drug is often not available in hospitals either, since scabies patients are usually treated on an outpatient basis, i.e. by a resident doctor - and the doctor is currently unable to get the drug.

According to the newspaper report, you can alternatively order another preparation from France, but this then has to be imported, and this is not paid for by all health insurance companies.

In addition, the import can take up to ten days, a very long period of time, especially considering that patients can infect their surroundings during this time.

According to the RP, it is currently still unclear when the delivery difficulties can be remedied. (ad)

Author and source information

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