Scabies is a highly infectious skin condition caused by the burrowing mite Sarcoptes scabiei. It causes intense pruritus, particularly at night, and can lead to secondary bacterial infection.
Topical insecticides for the treatment of scabies include permethrin and malathion. Although neither are licensed for use during pregnancy or breastfeeding, the available pregnancy safety data do not provide evidence that either product poses an increased risk to the fetus; however, data are too limited to formally rule out a risk. Treatment of scabies should not be withheld on account of pregnancy.
Exposure to topical scabies treatments at any stage in pregnancy would not usually be regarded as medical grounds for termination of pregnancy or any additional fetal monitoring. However, other risk factors may be present in individual cases which may independently increase the risk of adverse pregnancy outcome. Clinicians are reminded of the importance of consideration of such factors when performing case-specific risk assessments.
This is a summary of the full UKTIS monograph for health care professionals and should not be used in isolation. The full UKTIS monograph and access to any hyperlinked related documents is available to NHS health care professionals who are logged in.
If you have a patient with exposure to a drug or chemical and require assistance in making a patient-specific risk assessment, please telephone UKTIS on 0344 892 0909 to discuss the case with a teratology specialist.
If you would like to report a pregnancy to UKTIS please click here to download our pregnancy reporting form. Please encourage all women to complete an online reporting form.