Survey on Italian pediatrician head lice treatment preferences

Created on 31.10.13

A recently published survey of Italian pediatricians shows that malathion and pyrethroids are the leading pediculicides of choice for lice infections.

The survey, published in the Italian Journal of Pediatrics, showed that 32% of survey respondants first prescribed malathion to patients with head lice. Other pyrethroids and pyrethrins were prescribed by 29% of respondants, with dimeticone at 21% and permethrin at 10%.

The survey also showed that there was little difference in choice of pediculicide when asked specifically about children under 2 years of age.

Efficacy judgements were consistent across all types of treatment. Roughly two-thirds of respondants said that their first-line prescription treatment failed rarely or under 10% of the time; one-third said it failed 30-50% of the time.

The most common advice in the case of treatment failure was to repeat a complete cycle of the recommended front-line treatment (60% of respondants). 35% of respondants switch their preferred treatment in cases of failure.

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