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Are there any prescription treatments for head lice?


There are prescription treatment options for head lice. One such remedy is called Elimite® (permethrin). This is a prescription product that can be used to treat head lice. This medicine is typically used when over-the-counter products are not effective. A recent study found that the combination of permethrin and trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole (Bactrim®) was more likely to cure a head lice infestation than permethrin used alone. In rare cases where lice creams may not work. Ivermectin (Stromectol®) is a tablet that is taken in a single oral dose to treat lice. It has not been studied in children weighing less than 35 pounds.

Topical treatments

Gamma benzene hexachloride (lindane), malathion (Ovide®) and crotamiton (Eurax®) are other prescription drugs that are applied to the hair to treat lice. Most non-prescription methods are also applied directly the hair and have proven to be extremely effective.

Avoiding head lice

Head lice are tiny insects that infest the head and live on the scalp. Lice spread from person to person when you share hairbrushes, combs, hats, clothing, or bedding, or have direct contact. While there is no real prevention method, you can avoid contact with people or objects that have been contaminated by head lice.

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Answers to questions regarding information about medications or health conditions are not for diagnostic or treatment purposes and are not conclusive as to the presence or absence of any health condition. Consult your physician for diagnosis and treatment of your medical condition. The information provided is not a substitute for medical advice. Advances in medicine may cause this information to become outdated, invalid or subject to debate. Professional opinions and interpretations of the scientific literature may vary. Walgreens' terms of use and general warranty disclaimer apply to all services provided. If you are in need of immediate medical attention, contact your physician, poison control center or emergency medical professional. If you need to speak with a pharmacist for non-emergency matters, contact your local Walgreens pharmacist or call a pharmacist toll-free at 1 (877) 250-5823.

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