Impact and trend of factors affecting the prevalence of head lice (Pediculus capitis) infestation in primary school students
Background: Among arthropod-associated diseases or arthropods-pests of medical importance, Pediculus capitis is mentioned as one of the most common human obligate ectoparasites. Objective: The aim of this study was to determine the impact and trend of factors affecting the prevalence of P. capitis infestation among primary school students in Gilan-e Gharb County. Methods: Epidemiological information of students was completed using a questionnaire. To detect head lice or nits, the hair on scalp, the back of neck and around the student’s ears was carefully examined by experienced individuals (males and females according to the gender of the students). In order to obtain the definite identity, samples were sent to a medical entomology laboratory. Results: The present study showed that student age, gender and hygiene, bathing, father’s and mother’s education level, length and condition of hair, number of family members and income level, education level, and referring to the hairdresser are effective on the prevalence of P. capitis in students revealing significant differences between them (P < 0.05). The prevalence of P. capitis in girl students was higher than boys. The prevalence of P. capitis in students decreased with increasing student age and hygiene, bathing, father’s and mother’s education level, family income level, education level, and referring to the hairdresser. The prevalence of P. capitis in students increased with increasing number of student family members and hair length. The prevalence of P. capitis decreased with the change of student’s hair condition from smooth to curly. Conclusion: Primary-school students are intermingled in classes and have high contact rates. Then, P. capitis transmission occurs frequently. To efficiently decrease the prevalence of P. capitis in a community, all students or families at risk of being infested should be involved. Therefore, students and their parents should be informed about P. capitis infestation.
Faculty of Medicine, Chulalongkorn University
Zahirnia, Amirhossein; Aminpoor, Mohammad Ali; and Nasirian, Hassan
"Impact and trend of factors affecting the prevalence of head lice (Pediculus capitis) infestation in primary school students,"
Chulalongkorn Medical Journal: Vol. 65:
4, Article 2.
Available at: https://digital.car.chula.ac.th/clmjournal/vol65/iss4/2