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Pediculosis - Definition


Pediculosis is the generic term used for the infestation of lice, small insects that feed off human blood. There are different types of pediculosis, which are extremely contagious infestations, of which the most common is called head pediculosis, involving a head lice infestation of the scalp. Two other principal types exist: body pediculosis, an infestation of body lice, and phthiriasis, which is an infestation of pubic lice, often called crab lice. The principal symptom is extreme itchiness in the infested area. Small spots can appear due to severe scratching. Lice are not easy to detect, and their eggs, called nits, appear as small white spots attached to the root of a hair. Quarantine is advised, surrounding family or friends should be checked and treated, and hygienic measures should be implemented.