Oral ivermectin in scabies patients: a comparison with 1% topical lindane lotion

J Dermatol. 2001 Sep;28(9):481-4. doi: 10.1111/j.1346-8138.2001.tb00015.x.


Scabies. which constitutes a significant proportion of the outpatient attendance in tropical dermatology clinics, has so far been treated with lindane, crotamiton, sulphur, permethrin, etc. Ivermectin, an orally administered drug, was tried in scabies patients and compared with 1% topical lindane lotion to evaluate its effects and toxicity profile. Two hundred scabies patients were randomly allocated to one of two groups. One group received oral invermectin in a single dose of 200 micrograms/kg body weight. The other received 1% lindane lotion for topical application overnight. Patients were assessed after 48 hours, two weeks and four weeks. After a period of four weeks, 82.6% of the patients in the ivermectin group showed marked improvement; only 44.44% of the patients in the lindance group showed a similar response. A side effects in the form of severe headache were noted in one patient in group A. Oral ivermectin is an easy drug to administer. It is given as a single oral dose, unlike lindane, which has to be applied topically. The compliance is accordingly increased. Moreover, ivermectin induces an early and effective improvement in signs and symptoms. Thus, it may be a better option for scabies than the traditional topical linlane lotion.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Oral
  • Administration, Topical
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Hexachlorocyclohexane / administration & dosage*
  • Humans
  • Ivermectin / administration & dosage*
  • Male
  • Patient Compliance
  • Scabies / diagnosis
  • Scabies / drug therapy*
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Hexachlorocyclohexane
  • Ivermectin