Is this the end of nit picking, awful smelling shampoos and combing hair with a fine tooth comb? If the results from this recent study in the New England Journal of Medicine about lice treatments prove accurate, then it just might be the case.
In this study, researchers compared the effectiveness of an oral treatment of Ivermectin with a topical treatment of malathion lotion. This double-blind study was conducted over the course of 15 days and involved 812 patients.
The Ivermectin proved effective in ~95% of test subjects. The topical treatment was about 85% effective. So, maybe the oral treatment is the way to go (unless you are in the 5% of people where it didn’t work).
It would be nice if this meant that a simple oral treatment could replace the difficult and time consuming standard treatments for lice, but this one probably won’t. It is not 100% effective, not everyone can take the drug, and lice will certainly adapt. But if you’ve got a particularly difficult lice infestation to deal with, this could be the way to go.
Of course, there is a way that we could eradicate lice from the planet. Everyone, everywhere could shave their heads at the same time. That’s right, everyone shaves their heads bald. Without hair on which to live and reproduce, lice dies. It would be the end of lice infestations forever!!