Where do pediculus humanus corporis (body lice) populate in pediculosis and pthiriasis (lice infestation)?

Updated: Mar 01, 2018
  • Author: Lyn C C Guenther, MD, FRCPC, FAAD; Chief Editor: Michael Stuart Bronze, MD  more...
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Answer

Unlike the head louse and the pubic louse, the body louse does not live on the human body. P humanus corporis prefers cooler temperatures; it lives in human clothing, crawling onto the body only to feed, predominantly at night. Females lay 10-15 eggs per day on the fibers of clothing, mainly close to the seams. Adult body lice can live up to 30 days but die within 1-2 days when away from the host and without blood meals. [10] On average, no more than 10 adult female lice can be found on a person with an infestation, although a thousand have been removed from the clothes on a single infested individual. [11]


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