Pubic lice

  • Definition

    Pubic lice are small, six-legged creatures that infect the pubic hair area and lay eggs. These lice can also be found in armpit hair and eyebrows.


    Alternative Names

    Pediculosis - pubic lice; Lice - pubic; Crabs


    Causes, incidence, and risk factors

    Pubic lice are known as Phthirus pubis. Lice infestation is found mostly in teenagers and usually spreads during sexual activity.

    Sometimes, public lice can spread through contact with objects such as toilet seats, sheets, blankets, or bathing suits at a store. However, this type of spread is rare.

    Animals cannot spread lice to humans.

    Other types of lice include:

    • Body lice ( Pediculus humanus corporis)
    • Head lice ( Pediculus humanus capitis)

    Risk factors include:

    • Having multiple sexual partners
    • Having sexual contact with an infected person
    • Sharing bedding or clothing with an infected person