Chiggers

Alternative Names

Harvest mite; Red mite

Definition of Chiggers

Chiggers are tiny, six-legged wingless organisms (larvae) that grow up to become a type of mite. Chiggers are found in tall grass and weeds. Their bite causes severe itching.

Causes, incidence, and risk factors

Chiggers are found in certain outdoor areas, such as berry patches, tall grass and weeds, and woodland edges.

Symptoms

The main symptoms are:

Signs and tests

A doctor can diagnose chiggers by examining the rash.

Treatment

The objective of treatment is to relieve the itching. Antihistamines and corticosteroid creams or lotions may be helpful.

Expectations (prognosis)

This condition heals itself without treatment.

Review

David C. Dugdale, III, MD, Professor of Medicine, Division of General Medicine, Department of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine; Jatin M. Vyas, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor in Medicine, Harvard Medical School; Assistant in Medicine, Division of Infectious Disease, Department of Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc. – 9/15/2010

Chigger bite - close-up of blisters

ADAM Medical Encyclopedia

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