A Pioneer of Dermatologic Literature

Jake Gibbons, B.S., Tyler Marion, B.S., M.B.A. Keywords: Geronimo Mercuriali; scabies; medical history; pharmacology; skin disease; humanities In 1572, Italian physician Geronimo Mercuriali, Hieronymus Mercurialis in Latin, published De morbis cutaneis.  This storied book, whose title translates to “On Diseases of the Skin,” is the first published manuscript dedicated to diseases of the skin.1 In this work, Mercuriali outlines various dermatologic diseases, describing the physical manifestations of such conditions and proposing various homemade, therapeutic concoctions. Born to a working-class family in Forli, Italy in 1530, Geronimo Mercuriali spent his early life learning Greek and philosophy. As a young man, he studied medicine in Padua, Italy before returning to his birthplace to … Continue reading


Transmission of Scabies

Keywords: scabies, transmission, Mellanby, fomites, beds In the early 1940s, scabies was an important cause of morbidity in the troops.  Kenneth Mellanby did important, but ethically questionable, experiments on conscientious objectors to determine how scabies spreads.  Interestingly, fomites do not seems to be a serious risk for transmission.  I’ve attached a link to Mellenby’s report in the British Medical Journal from 1941.  Scabies Transmission by Kenneth Mellanby Kenneth Mellanby died in 1994.  His obituary is interesting.


Dermatoscopic Diagnosis of Scabies

Dr. Cohen is a dermatology resident at LECOM/Alta Dermatology in Mesa, Arizona.  Email YC. Keywords:  scabies, dermoscopy, delta sign, triangle sign, diagnosis Scabies is an itchy skin condition caused by a tiny burrowing mite called Sarcopetes scabiei.  A scabies diagnosis can be confirmed by taking a skin scraping and seeing the scabies mite, scybala (its pellet-shaped feces), or ovum under the microscope. However, the traditional scabies preparations can be challenging to obtain in certain patient populations, such as young children. Dermatoscopy’s advantage is that it is non-invasive, painless and highly diagnostic in practiced hands. We would like to briefly discuss the typical dermatoscopic features that are seen in patients with … Continue reading

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