Treatment of head louse infestation with 4% dimeticone lotion: randomised controlled equivalence trial.

Abstract:

OBJECTIVE:To evaluate the efficacy and safety of 4% dimeticone lotion for treatment of head louse infestation. DESIGN:Randomised controlled equivalence trial. SETTING:Community, with home visits. PARTICIPANTS:214 young people aged 4 to 18 years and 39 adults with active head louse infestation. INTERVENTIONS:Two applications seven days apart of either 4.0% dimeticone lotion, applied for eight hours or overnight, or 0.5% phenothrin liquid, applied for 12 hours or overnight. OUTCOME MEASURES:Cure of infestation (no evidence of head lice after second treatment) or reinfestation after cure. RESULTS:Cure or reinfestation after cure occurred in 89 of 127 (70%) participants treated with dimeticone and 94 of 125 (75%) treated with phenothrin (difference -5%, 95% confidence interval -16% to 6%). Per protocol analysis showed that 84 of 121 (69%) participants were cured with dimeticone and 90 of 116 (78%) were cured with phenothrin. Irritant reactions occurred significantly less with dimeticone (3/127, 2%) than with phenothrin (11/125, 9%; difference -6%, -12% to -1%). Per protocol this was 3 of 121 (3%) participants treated with dimeticone and 10 of 116 (9%) treated with phenothrin (difference -6%, -12% to -0.3%). CONCLUSION:Dimeticone lotion cures head louse infestation. Dimeticone seems less irritant than existing treatments and has a physical action on lice that should not be affected by resistance to neurotoxic insecticides.

journal_name

BMJ

authors

Burgess IF,Brown CM,Lee PN

doi

10.1136/bmj.38497.506481.8F

keywords:

subject

Has Abstract

pub_date

2005-06-18 00:00:00

pages

1423

issue

7505

eissn

0959-8138

issn

1756-1833

pii

bmj.38497.506481.8F

journal_volume

330

pub_type

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