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New Fast-Acting Treatment For Head Lice

March 1, 2010, 5:08 PM by Kelli Grant

It's a common problem.  Six to twelve million kids are affected by head lice each year. Fortunately, there's a safe, new treatment that's fast acting.

Every year millions of parents and children have to deal with the itching and the embarrassment of lice. But a new FDA-approved treatment is safe and very effective at killing the tiny bugs.

The prescription medication, called Ulesfia, uses benzyl alcohol lotion. It works by suffocating the lice instead of killing them with pesticides, like some other products.

"A need for new treatments has come about because of the really high rate of resistance with the more conventional over the counter treatments," Dr. Gabrielle Gold-Von Simson from NYU Langone Medical Center said.

Treatment is only one part of the battle. Parents still have to go through their child's hair with a comb and they need to do head checks until the infestation is gone. Getting rid of lice on stuffed animals, clothes and bedding is also key.

The study also found that medication was safe and effective in children as young as six months old.

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