Alternate Names : Cutaneous larvae migrans, Ancylostoma braziliense
A creeping eruption is infection with dog or cat hookworm larvae.
Overview, Causes, & Risk Factors
Hookworm eggs are found in the stool of infected dogs and cats. When the eggs hatch, the resulting larvae infest the soil and vegetation. When you touch this infested soil, the larvae can dig into your skin, causing an intense inflammatory response that leads to a rash and severe itching.
Creeping eruption is more common in countries with warm climates. In the U.S., the southeastern states have the highest rates of infection. The main risk factor for this disease is contact with damp, sandy soil contaminated with infected cat and dog feces. More children than adults become infected.
Pictures & Images
Hookworm – mouth of the organism
This photograph shows the front section of the hookworm, and the mouth parts which it uses to feed. The cutting plates, used to attach to the lining of the intestine where they suck blood for nourishment, are visible. Three species of hookworm cause infection in the United States, including this species, Necator americanus. (Image courtesy of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.)
Hookworm – close-up of the organism
This is the mouth part of the hookworm Ancyclostoma duodenale. The hookworm uses sharp, curved cutting plates to attach to the lining of the intestine where it sucks blood for nourishment. (Image courtesy of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.)
Hookworm – Ancylostoma caninum
This is a photograph of a hookworm on the lining of the intestine. (Image courtesy of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.)
Cutaneous larva migrans
Cutaneous larva migrans is a condition that occurs when dog or cat hookworm larvae migrate through the skin. The migration produces a raised, red, twisting (serpiginous) pattern on the skin.
Strongyloidiasis, creeping eruption on the back
Hookworm larvae that have migrated through the skin have caused the reddish serpiginous (snake-like) pattern on the left side of this individual’s back.
Review Date : 12/3/2008
Reviewed By : 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.