Pubic Lice (Crab louse)

Lice are ecto-parasites, parasites that live on the outside of the body of the victimized host. There are three types of lice that can be found on the human body, head lice, body lice and pubic lice. Head lice are the most common. Lice cause itching, irritation and annoyance. They also transmit many serious diseases such as typhus and trench fever. The pubic louse is commonly called the crab louse due to its small crab-like body. It is a whitish color with a dark patch on each shoulder and has developed claws on each of its reddish legs. The body is about 1/16 of an inch long which is much smaller than the head and body lice. Pubic lice are most commonly found in the pubic region but can be found elsewhere such as the armpits or eyebrows. Like the head lice, the pubic lice also glue their eggs to the hair on the body, but their eggs are a lot smaller than the head lice eggs. Female pubic lice produce about three eggs a day and generation time is about twenty to twenty five days.

How do I know if I have pubic lice?

The primary characteristic of pubic lice is intense scratching in the pubic region. There could also be intense scratching on the eyebrows or even scalp. In the infested areas a bluish colored sore may appear. The main transmission method of pubic lice is through sexual contact. One can also obtain pubic lice through non-sexual contact such as sharing a bed or even infested clothing but this is less likely to occur.

What kind of consequences come from pubic lice?

Intense itching and scratching can occur in the pubic region from pubic lice. Bluish bumps may appear and these lice could cause uncomfortable sleep. Since pubic lice are transmitted by sexual contact, their presence may be associated with other sexually transmitted diseases.

How can I treat for pubic lice?

There are multiple over the counter products that can treat pubic lice. But you must also wash and clean all infected areas after treatment. You may need to pick out nits from the infested area after treatment.
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