Medliorate

Improving medical students

Cimex Lectularius – Rapid Review of the Bedbug

Posted by medliorator on February 21, 2010

You’ll liekly encounter the bedbug during your outpatient rotations.  Here is an excellent review from Clinical Correlations.

Cimex lectularius, commonly known as the bedbug, had been a pest of yesteryear, until recently… Host reactions to bedbug bites are widely variable. Most people do not have a reaction; others may develop pruritic erythematous papules,[4] or local urticaria with wheals or welts. Bullous skin lesions and systemic anaphylactic reactions have also been reported but are rare.[5] The lesions may be evident upon awakening or may appear a day or two later. They are the result of host hypersensitivity against foreign antigens in bedbug saliva; [5]the bite itself is harmless. The lesions are usually pruritic, and they can become superinfected after intense scratching. Secondary skin lesions such as cellulitis or folliculitis may also develop.[5] The diagnosis is not always clear, especially without a suggestive history. The eruption has been mistaken for scabies, allergic contact dermatitis, dermatitis herpetiformis, and even chicken pox. [7,8] Lesions in a linear or clustered pattern should raise the suspicion of bedbug bites, although other insect bites can present in similar manner. A detailed history exploring possible sources of exposure is helpful. The most common lesions are pruritic papules,[5] which spontaneously regress over one to two weeks, but often leave behind the telltale sign of postinflammatory hyperpigmentation.

What Should We Know About Bedbugs? [Clinical Correlations]

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