Pediculosis capitis: an update.Indian J Dermatol Venereol Leprol. 2012 Jul-Aug; 78(4):429-38.IJ
Head louse infestation, or pediculosis capitis, caused by Pediculus humanus var. capitis, is a common health concern in pediatric age group. An itching of the scalp is the chief symptom, whereas presence of viable nits confirms the diagnosis of head louse infestation. Secondary bacterial infection with impetignization with cervical and occipital lymphadenopathy can complicate the clinical scenario with physician misdiagnosing pediculosis to a primary bacterial infection. Screening and treatment of all close contacts is necessary for an adequate management of pediculosis. Medical management of head louse infestation requires proper application of topical pediculicidal agents', chiefly permethrin lotion and wet combing with a fine toothcomb. Severe cases with high parasitic load justify the use of either oral cotrimoxazole or Ivermectin. Other described technique involves a single application of hot air for 30 minutes. Radical but culturally unacceptable method would be shaving of scalp in resistant cases. Environmental fogging with insecticides is neither necessary nor recommended.