Cercarial dermatitis


Life-cycle of swimmers itch.
  • Also known as "Swimmer's itch"
  • Skin exposed to freshwater schistosomes or coastal water clam diggers itch
  • Cercaria (non-human schistisomes)
  • Not be confused with Seabather's eruption (caused by the larval stage of cnidarians (e.g., jellyfish))

Dermatitis Types

Clinical Features

Cercarial dermatitis on lower legs, four days after spending a day in the shallows of a lake.
  • Occurs on the exposed skin outside of close-fitting garments
    • Versus Seabather's eruption, which is generally under the garments worn by bathers and swimmers (where the organisms are trapped after the person leaves the water)

Differential Diagnosis

Travel-related skin conditions

See also domestic U.S. ectoparasites


  • Typically a clinical diagnosis



See Also

External Links