Document Type : Original Article


1 Department of Parasitology, Faculty of Medicine, Ain Shams University, Cairo 11566, Egypt

2 Department of Biology, Faculty of Science, University of Tabuk, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia


Three lice types infest man by contact or using infested tools: 1- Head louse (Pediculus hu-
manus capitis), 2- Body louse (P. humanus humanus), & 3- Pubic louse or crab (Phthirus pubis),
often spread by sexual contact, all races human worldwide are infested. Adult louse is about the
sesame seed size, with 6 legs (each with claws), no wings and is tan to grayish-white, in persons
with dark hair, louse appears darker. Females are usually larger than males and deposits up to 8
nits (eggs) per day. Adult lice can live up to 30 days on a human's head, feeding on his blood
several times daily. Without blood meals, louse dies within 1 to 2 days off the host. Body lice
are similar to head lice, reside on and lay eggs on clothing and fomites of infested person and
migrate to his human body to feed. Pubic lice are tiny insects live on body hair, especially pubic
hair around the penis or vagina. They're spread by close body contact, most commonly by sexual
contact. Human lice are blood-sucking nuisances and of social embarrassment cause, especially
among children. Epidemic typhus fever and epidemic relapsing fever primarily associated with
disasters. Trench fever transmitted by body lice. Phthiriasis (pediculosis ciliaris) causes eyelids
to become itchy with red and watery eyes, as pubic lice eggs cling to eyelashes.