Is triamcinolone used to treat scabies?

Although, scabies is completely curable through medication, errors in administration of treatment course or poorly followed guidelines of doctor may lead to treatment failure in many cases. Moreover, the symptoms including itching and rashes may take over 2-3 weeks to completely disappear.

Common Medical Treatments for Scabies

Most common topical treatment that doctors prescribe to scabies patients is permethrin(elimite, Acticin) 5%, which must be administered strictly in accordance with the schedule and defined procedure. An adult will usually require 30 grams of ointment to cure scabies.

In some cases, when patient report failure in first course of scabies treatment, doctors often prescribe one of other scabicides, like ivermectin (Mectizan or Stromectol) or 10% crotamiton cream or lotion (Eurax).

Ivermectin is an antiparasitic agent that is tested safe to be applied on human skin.

Crotamiton is 50-60% effective provided full five-day course is completed.

Often scabies victims ask about use of some other ointments/scabicides that claim to cure them.

Is Triamcinolone Effective Against Scabies Mite?

Some scabies cases reported prescription of Triamcinolone cream (0.1%-0.025%) by doctors and they claim it worked for them. So, it becomes one of the most frequently asked questions; is triamcinolone effective in scabies cure?

Chemistry of Triamcinolone Acetonide

It’s mostly associated with scabies due to its use to treat various skin conditions, like eczema and diseases with similar symptoms such as red rashes, intense itching, inflammation and dryness of skin. In some cases, the cream is meant to provide relief from itching or discomfort and does not actually treat the infection. Triamcinolone Acetonide is synthetic corticosteroid or say, it mimics corticosteroids. It must be kept in mind that as Triamcinolone contains steroids, it’ll not be available over the counter.

As per studies, triamcinolone isn’t effective against the scabies mites – Sarcoptes Scabiei. The mite is harder to kill as it burrows beneath epidermis – first layer of skin. Usual ointments will be effective only on surface of skin. To kill scabies mite, the ointment must reach it and that’s why doctor will instruct patient to use brush to rub a scabicide on skin instead of wool/cotton. Triamcinolone can’t do that, so rarely any doctor will prescribe it against scabies. However, it can be prescribed after completion of permetrin 5% course. The itching and rashes takes a few weeks to disappear completely even after a person is cured completely. The dead mite and its eggs still remain inside skin and body’s allergic reaction- itching and rashes.

When Do Doctors Prescribe Triamcinolone?

The only reason for which a doctor will prescribe Triamcinolone is to assist in curing symptoms, and not to treat scabies. However, it’s quite effective against skin conditions where person require relief from inflammation. In some cases, nystatin and triamcinolone are combined to skin infections.

Natural Alternatives for Scabies Cure

While doctors rely on permethrin 5% for most effective treatment of scabies, people do look for natural alternatives as chemical-based ointments can cause damage to skin, especially in children. Therefore, people search for home-made or natural alternatives for treatment of scabies. Bleach bath, for instance, is believed to be effective against scabies mite. It’s not entirely true that bleach can kill scabies mite as it’s burrowed under skin. People who tried bleach bath either suffered increase in itching or received little relief. Bath in Neem leaves is also believed to assist in scabies cure. Neem leaves work for skin related conditions, but not for diseases as severe as scabies.

Scabies is known to have existed from the times of Aristotle, who had first identified scabies mites. It’s highly contagious and must not be mistaken for normal skin diseases, which happens very often as scabies share symptoms with other skin conditions. Person must stick to prescriptions and instructions provided by doctor to recover completely.

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