Dozens of troops from the Central Command's 'Dragon' artillery battalion who are currently training in the Golan Heights have over the last few days complained of severe itching which is most likely a result of scabies found in the bedding and mattresses on the base.
The soldiers have received medical care and were separated from the uninfected troops. In an unusual decision the chief medical officer directed that the base be closed until the problem is solved for fear of contagion.
"The soldiers can't stop itching and infecting each other. They received sick leave. No one understands how it started," soldiers from the battalion noted.
The IDF Spokesman stated that "Following soldiers' complaints of itching, the complainants were examined by the unit doctor and were diagnosed with scabies. Meanwhile, several soldiers were referred to specialist dermatologists for further consultations and confirmation of the diagnosis.
"The unit carried out disinfestations… in order to prevent the disease from spreading and soldiers are be care for within the battalion in accordance with their medical situation while maintaining separation between the soldiers who contracted (the disease) and the healthy soldiers."
Scabies is a skin infection that is caused by a tiny and usually not directly visible parasite, which burrows under the host's skin, causing intense allergic itching.
Prescription medicated creams which are apllied all over the sufferer's body, are commonly used to treat scabies infections.
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