More Effective Treatment for Head Lice

Over-the-counter chemical treatments are not as effective as the “Bug Buster” kit in eliminating head lice, according to a new study.

Head lice are a widespread, persistent, and recurring problem among school-age children. Infestation occurs when parasites manifest on the scalp. Insecticide products and fine tooth combing of the hair are common treatments for head lice. However, while registered insecticides are considered safe for occasional use, there is some concern over the risk of toxicity to children, and wet combing is an unproven treatment.

In a study designed to compare the use of chemical treatments to the wet comb kit “Bug Buster,” researchers from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine in London, assessed 126 children between the ages of 2 and 15 who are infected with head lice. They assigned 70 children to use insecticide treatments and 70 to use the “Bug Buster” kit. Participants filled out questionnaires in order for researchers to determine compliance. The presence of head lice was monitored between two and four days following the end of treatment.

The study showed that the fine tooth combing kit was more effective in treating head lice than the chemical products, with a 57 percent vs. 13 percent cure rate, respectively.

According to researchers, the findings suggest that the “Bug Buster” is a viable option in head lice treatment. They added, while some may not find a 57-percent cure rate adequate enough, there are not any products known to provide full effective control.

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