Case of scabies reported at Memphis elementary school

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Parents of students at Caldwell-Guthrie elementary received a letter Monday informing them of a reported case of scabies.

The letter states school officials were bringing it to their attention "because scabies can spread rapidly unless all affected children are promptly treated."

However, the letter does not include information about the grade level of the student with scabies. Parents said they would like to have that information.

“So we can have an idea of what grade or what we need to look out for like, we don’t know nothing. It could be the whole school for all we know. I’m trying to figure out what I need to do," Andrea Roby said.

Scabies is a highly contagious skin ailment caused by mites, but it requires longer periods of exposure to spread.

"So just passing someone in the hallway, you probably wouldn’t contract it from somebody if you happen to brush up against them but somebody in your same classroom that might be placing you at more of a risk," Dr. Joseph Pietrangelo of Memphis Dermatology Clinic said.

It can take weeks for symptoms to appear which will include itching and then a rash. Because of that physicians encourage parents to hold off any treatment because everyone in the house would be impacted

“You have to do it twice one week apart. Everybody in the house has to put this cream on one week apart, two times in the course of a week, to make sure you get rid of all the mites completely," Pietrangelo said.

The school said there's only been one reported case of scabies.

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