Louses are parasites of the human being and the animals, they feed of the host’s blood (the breeds that parasite the animals can not parasite the human being and back). The pediculouses is the infecting pathology caused by the louses and can be transmitted for direct contact with guys and infested clothes.

Three are the breeds of louses that attack the human being:

  • HEAD LOUSE (Pediculus Humanus capitis), the most common breed and also most frequent. Today the head louses do not transmit diseases, do not provoke serious injuries to the heath but only awkward situations for social relations, because, their presence can be incorrectness give to bad hygiene. The head louse is widespread all over the world and bits every social stratums and, the persons more at risk of head pediculouses, are the children from 3 to 13-14 years old, because they offer an ideal environment for their growing, that, unlike of what the majority thinks, these parasites, prefer slim hair, clean and a dry and not fat environment.. They are not insects that fly or jump, the passage from one person to another happen just for direct contact head to head, common for the children, and usually more bitten are the girls for the kind of toys and clothes that often they exchange. Usually, for a control against the infestation of the head louse is useful to know which are the areas of the head where nits and fully-grown hide: behind the hears, the nape of the neck and into the temples.
  • PUBIC LOUSE (Pthirus Pubis), more commonly called crab, has got an average life of 15-20 days. The eggs have a developmental cycle of one week and they are laid at the base of the hair. Pubic pediculouses is considered a contagious disease, it a sexually transmittable disease because it is entirely transmitted for sexual way. The areas that are parasite by the pubic louse, are the wet parts of the body and they are covered by a lot of hair and are: the genitalia, perineum, thighs, abdomen, chest, armpits, eyelashes, eyebrows ad he beard, if it is comparatively long. The pubic louses, are not easily discernible, but the common symptoms are the nocturnal pruritus and the appearance of little scabs on the clothes, the excrementa, and some cerulean maculae provoked b the stings of the parasite.
  • BODY LOUSE (Pediculus Humanus corporis) in the past more commonly known as louse of the clothes. It is a parasite connected to the personal hygienic conditions; usually we can find it in the nomadic populations also if today the pediculouses carried by the body louse is very singular. Furthermore, this breed of louse is the only that can be carrier of diseases as the hospital fever and frequent troubles of the temperature, and, increasingly secondary infections provoked by the bite of the insect more than popules or haemorrhagic maculae and a strong pruritus. It is called louse of the clothes because it nests into the clothes and along the sewing of the clothes, where they lay also the eggs, in fact it is transmitted by direct contact with clothes, bed-clothes, bed linens already infested. Hardly it can be identified in the body of the host because it remains there just the time for feeding, and it is bigger than the head louse.


Louses are little parasites of 2-3 mm, they belong to the order of Phthiraphtera, and they have a wrap-around body shaped like a crap, with a vitrified grey-colour with hairy warts. They have 3 pairs of hooked paws and on the head two antennae. The louses own a buccal apparatus with which they suck the blood of the host; with the teeth they anchor afterwards, they penetrate in the epidermis making a little hole with the claggers and, at the end, they reach the blood vessel from which they feed; the pruritorous and the dermatisis that are obtained are provoked by the anticoagulant saliva that the louse injects when it perforates the epidermis.

Fully-grown louses can live only from 1 to 3 days outside the host, because, unlike the other parasite, the louse needs heat and to feed at regular intervals of 6 hours and they do not resist more than 4 hours underwater.

The nits that are the eggs of the house can survive outside the host at room temperature also for 10 days, furthermore, they are resistant to the water thanks to the contents of keratinic compounds of the saliva with which the female anchor them to the hair of the host.


The female after having been impregnated lays from 8 to 10 eggs for each day, it lives on the average for 3 weeks and during them it can lays to 300 eggs or nits, that are anchored to trichomes or hair at a distance from the epidermis of 5-10mm, they have a whitish-grey colour of about 1 millimetre of length.

The living cycle from nit to fully-grown louse develops into three stages:

  • Nit or egg that hatches after 1 week, they have a longer shape.
  • Nymph: it presents like the fully-grown louse but it is smallest and it already feeds of blood. This stage of nymph has an average life of one week.
  • Fully-grown insect: the average life of a fully-grown louse is of about three weeks according to the feed, the male louse has a longer life than the female.


One of the sources of the spread of the louses is their resistance to the products against the louses, very alike if not equal to the composition of the parasiticides used in agriculture, then the danger of these products is caused by the extended usage that render them highly Toxic, above all for the children that are more hitted. The parasiticide more used and more effective is the Permetrina at 1%.

For the pediculosis of the head, more frequent and common, exists more natural methods as the usage of the of the fine-tooth comb (available for sale in the pharmacy) associated to the use of a simple balsam with white colour. This natural treatment, easy, innocuous and at low cost, if tit is executed correctly, and every two days, it allows the eradication of the eggs and the louses.

This simple process, that has to be repeated every two days, consists in the wetting of the hair with tepid water and then stroke them with the balsam, successively, combs the hair one lock after another with the fine-tooth comb upon which will remain entangled whether the eggs or the louses. Will rinse repeatedly and widely the fine-tooth comb and repeat the method.

The nits at the end can be removed also with the usage in the heat of the diluted acetic acid.

The treatment of the pediculousis by the louses of the body, is realized starting from the scavenging of the clothes and the linen into hot water at 60 degrees, adequate for eliminating whether the eggs or the louses, and for the other clothes that can not be washed with water, must proceed with the dry-cleaning. As far as concerned for the infested item is suggested the application on the body of Little stones/pyrethrum but, above all must be maintained adequate hygienic conditions.


There are not systems or Treatments of prevention of the infestations caused by the louses, above all with the parasiticides because they will render the louses ever more resistant to these products that have to be, instead, utilized only and exclusively upon subjects already infested. The control, the cleanliness of the hair and the personal hygiene remain the prevention methods more effective.

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