Skip to content
    Font Size
    A
    A
    A

    Morgellons

    Morgellons is a controversial and poorly understood condition in which unusual thread-like fibers appear under the skin. The patient may feel like something is crawling, biting, or stinging all over.

    Some medical experts say Morgellons is a physical illness. Others suggest it is a type of psychosis called "delusional parasitosis," in which a person thinks parasites have infected their skin.

    Recommended Related to Skin Problems & Treatments

    Sunburn

    Read the Sunburn article > >

    Your doctor may call it an "unexplained dermopathy," which means a skin condition that occurs without a known reason. Other medical professionals have dubbed the condition "fiber disease."

    Symptoms of Morgellons

    Unpleasant skin sensations are the main complaint. People with Morgellons may also complain of:

    • Feeling like bugs are crawling all over the skin.
    • Burning or stinging sensations under the skin.
    • Intense itching.
    • Skin sores that appear suddenly and heal slowly.
    • Sores that leave very red (hyperpigmented) scars.

    Some patients report thread-like fibers stuck in the skin.

    People with Morgellons sometimes complain of other symptoms which may include:

     

    Treatment of Morgellons

    There is no known cure for Morgellons. Treating any medical or psychiatric problems that occur at the same time as Morgellons may help ease Morgellons symptoms in some patients.

    A team of medical researchers at the Mayo Clinic also recommend that patients with these symptoms should undergo psychiatric evaluation.

    Who Gets Morgellons

    In the past, few doctors had heard of Morgellons. But in response to scattered reports, the CDC worked together with several other health care agencies to investigate this condition. Most reports came from California, Texas, and Florida, although patients have been seen in all 50 states.

    The CDC study found that Morgellons is most likely to affect middle-aged white women.

    Many of the patients in the CDC study showed signs of being obsessively concerned about health problems in general. This is called somatic concerns.

    About half of the people in the study had other health problems, including depression and drug abuse.

    The Debate Over Morgellons

    The question of whether Morgellons is a disease or a delusion has prompted debate and new research in recent years.

    Today on WebMD

    chafing
    Pictures and symptoms of the red, scaly rash.
    woman with dyed dark hair
    What it says about your health.
     
    woman with cleaning products
    Top causes of the itch that rashes.
    atopic dermatitus
    Identify and treat common skin problems.
     
    itchy skin
    Article
    shingles rash on skin
    Article
     
    woman with skin tag
    Quiz
    Woman washing face
    Video
     
    woman washing her hair in sink
    Video
    close up of womans bare neck
    Tools
     
    Feet
    Slideshow
    woman with face cream
    Quiz