What causes maggots under the skin

Fly maggot infestation

Synonym: myiasis


  • Especially in regions with a tropical or subtropical climate, especially Central and South America


  • Fly maggot infestation (syn. Myiasis or maggot feed) is caused by flies that deposit their maggots for further development in the muscle tissue of mammals or humans.
  • They penetrate the skin from the fly egg and hide in a furuncle-like ulcer from which they hatch after a period of maturation.
  • The fly maggot infestation is characterized by a strong painfulness of the skin furuncles.


  • Blowflies lay their eggs and meat flies their larvae on wound secretions and on the nasal mucosa, in the corners of the eyes, in the ear canals and on the scalp.
  • The African tumbler fly lays its eggs on body secretions such as urine and sweat on the floor or on the laundry.
  • The American botfly, on the other hand, attaches its eggs to insects so that mosquitoes act as a vector for humans. Upon skin contact, the larvae hatch from the eggs and penetrate the skin. They form painful skin lumps that can be accompanied by a fever. The larvae can usually be easily squeezed out of the skin opening and should be removed as soon as possible.


  • Careful and daily personal hygiene. In the tropics, laundry and towels should not be dried on the floor.