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Head Lice

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Illustration copyright 2002 Nucleus Communications, Inc. All rights reserved. http://www.nucleusinc.com

Adult head lice are approximately the size of a sesame seed [2.5 mm (0.1 in.) to 3.5 mm (0.14 in.)] and can vary in color from white to brown to dark gray.

Louse eggs (nits) are much smaller [1 mm (0.03 in.)] and look like light gray or brown oval cylinders glued to individual hair shafts.

Head lice spread easily from one person to another through close bodily contact or through shared clothing or personal items such as hats or hair brushes.

ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical ReviewerJohn Pope, MD - Pediatrics
Specialist Medical ReviewerSusan C. Kim, MD - Pediatrics
Last RevisedAugust 30, 2012

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: August 30, 2012
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

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