Officials: 2 confirmed cases of scabies at local school

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PITTSBURGH —

Officials with Pittsburgh Faison sent home a letter to parents on Tuesday alerting them that there have been two confirmed cases of students with scabies.

“Please be advised that although these cases did not originate at Faison, we wanted to make sure you are well-informed about scabies and know that our facilities disinfected the building this weekend with a safe, hospital-grade disinfectant,” the letter said. “We are also sending home any student that appears to have a skin rash and they must return with medical clearance from a doctor.” 

Scabies is an infestation of the skin by the microscopic mite that burrows into the upper layer of the skin. 

Scabies can be transferred from person to person through direct skin-to-skin contact. This condition is at times difficult to diagnose. 

The infestation appears to look like a pimple-like skin rash and causes severe itching. 

If you have been notified that your child may have scabies or if you notice this type of rash on your child, please take them to the doctor immediately. A doctor must examine a small scrapping of the skin under a microscope to determine if the mites are present. 

Products used to treat scabies are available only with a doctor’s prescription. Over-the-counter products will not work. 


  • Below is the entire letter sent home to parents on Tuesday:

May 27, 2014

Dear Pittsburgh Faison Families:

This letter is to alert you that there have been a two confirmed cases of students with Scabies at Pittsburgh Faison. Please be advised that although these cases did not originate at Faison, we wanted to make sure you are well informed about Scabies and know that our facilities disinfected the building this weekend with a safe, hospital-grade disinfectant. We are also sending home any student that appears to have a skin rash and they must return with medical clearance from a doctor.  To ensure that you can take the appropriate steps toward prevention and control for your child, please carefully review the contents of this letter.

What is Scabies?

Scabies is an infestation of the skin by the microscopic mite that burrows into the upper layer of the skin. Scabies can be transferred from person to person through direct skin to skin contact.  This condition is at times difficult to diagnose.  The infestation appears to look like a pimple-like skin rash and causes severe itching.  If you have been notified that your child may have scabies or if you notice this type of rash on your child, please take them to the doctor immediately.  A doctor must examine a small scrapping of the skin under a microscope to determine if the mites are present.  If you child is presenting symptoms or has a confirmed case, we ask that you please keep your child home until they have been seen by their doctor and/or has received a prescription for treatment. Your child’s doctor should also provide a note stating that the student was treated and is able to return to school.

How is Scabies treated?

Products used to treat Scabies are available only with a doctor’s prescription.  Over the counter products will not work.  Please carefully read the directions on the cream or lotion package.  Leave the cream or lotion on for the recommended time and then wash it off your child and have your child put on clean clothing.  Treatment is also recommended for all members in the home at the same time as the infected child.  Retreatment may be necessary in 2-4 weeks. 

All towels, bed linens, and clothing should be washed in hot, soapy water.  Non-washable items can be disinfected in the dryer for 20 minutes on high, provided the heat will not damage the article.  If items cannot be washed or dry cleaned place them in a plastic bag for 14 days.  Carefully vacuum all carpets and upholstered furniture.

Your assistance in this matter is greatly appreciated. Please do not hesitate to contact the school nurse or myself at 412-247-0305 with any questions or concerns.

Sincerely,

LouAnn Zwieryznski, Principal