Scabies, known as the seven-year itch, is a contagious skin infestation by the

miteSarcoptesscabeivarhominis.Though scabies is a common disease the rarity of community based epidemiological studies in India in recent time is notable. Scabies has been classified as a neglected disease and it does not receive much attention in forum of research and funding.Hence this study aims to assess prevalence of scabies and its socioeconomic as well as environmental determinants among rural population of North Central Tamil Nadu and also the public health measures needed to control scabies

Aims and objectives:

  1. To find the prevalence of scabies among rural population of Tamil Nadu.
  2. To find the socioeconomic and environmental determinants of scabies.

Materials and methods:

A community based cross sectional study was conducted in the villages coming under field practice areas of Rural Health training centre of our hospital after institution ethics committee approval.Individuals in all age-groups in the study area who fulfil the inclusion criteria was recruited for the study. The data was collected between the months of January 2020 to June 2021. Sampling was done as a two stage cluster sampling. A House to house survey was done among the recruited participants. The socio demographic details, housing conditions and other environmental conditions of the participants were collected using a pre – designed questionnaire.


Out of 450 respondents, overall 41 (9.1%) respondents were diagnosed to have scabies.In our study the prevalence of scabies in respondents, middle age (31-50 years) respondents were found to be having more odds of having scabies compared to youth. males were having 2. times (more odds of contracting scabies. Overcrowding at home was a statistically significant strong association, where those with overcrowding were having 2.5 times odd of getting scabies than those who didn’t have it. Sharing of clothes with others” was found to be associated significantly to the odd of getting scabies than those who don’t. Genital lesions and finger webs remains the two most common sites affected in our study.

Limitations of the study:

  • All the diagnosis was based on clinical presentation and investigations were not done.
  • The open field setting and rural environment was not favourable for complete examination of the respondents


Scabies is an important and commonly encountered health problem which is highly contagious. This could be easily prevented if the patients of scabies are recognised and treated early and proper awareness is given at community level.