Head Lice Misdiagnosis

May 13, 2013

In a research study 555 samples were sent in identified as head lice cases – only 57.5% were correctly diagnosed.
Teachers – 50% correct
Relatives – 47% correct
Nurses – 32% correct
Physicians – 11% correct

The study was published in:
Pediatric Infectious Disease Journal. 2000 Aug;19(8):689-93; discussion 694.
Overdiagnosis and consequent mismanagement of head louse infestations in North America.
Pollack RJ, Kiszewski AE, Spielman A.
Department of Immunology and Infectious Diseases, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA 02115, USA. rpollack@hsph.harvard.edu