Before removal.
Cutaneous myiasis

Cutaneous myiasis is a temporary infestation of the skin with fly larvae order Diptera, e.g., Dermatobia hominis, and is a common disease in tropical zones. The adult female lays eggs on the ground that hatch to first-stage larvae. They then penetrate the skin of a warm-blooded animal (e.g., a human lying on the ground or sand) and mature to adult larvae. The larvae then fall to the ground and turn into flies.


Multiple, scattered, red, papulonodules much like furuncles that may drain a serosanguinous fluid are characteristic.

Differential Diagnosis

See draining nodules.


Treatment usually consists of injection with lidocaine followed by surgical removal of the larva. Prior to any procedure, occlusion of the opening with Vaseline, etc., can often coax the larva to emerge in search of oxygen.

Additional Photos

A scalp lesion and its contents. Courtesy Stacy Smith, MD
Cutaneous myiasis Cutaneous myiasis

Before and after removal.
Cutaneous myiasis Cutaneous myiasis


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