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Answered 2008-05-04 14:29:00

Scabies is not caused by a pathogen. Scabies is an infestation of the skin with the microscopic mite Sarcoptes scabei.Infestation is common, found worldwide, and affects people of all races and social classes. Scabies spreads rapidly under crowded conditions where there is frequent skin-to-skin contact between people, such as in hospitals, institutions, child-care facilities, and nursing homes. Prolonged skin-to-skin contact is required to spread scabies (handshakes will not spread it). Sharing clothes with someone who has scabies can spread it, and it can also very easily be spread to sexual partners.

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