According to the American Centers for Disease Control, head lice is a common condition in school-agers. Roughly 6-12 million cases are reported every year. To tame outbreaks and provide patients with fast relief, doctors sometimes prescribe Spinosad topical suspension cream.
This medicine is available by prescription only under the U.S. trade name Natroba, an FDA approved drug intended for head lice. It is considered safe for use in patients who are four years or older, including seniors over the age of 65.
Head lice are parasites or tiny insects that have a penchant for making a home in human hair. These are minuscule organisms and to give you some perspective, lice measure roughly the size of a sesame seed. The nits (eggs) are even tinier – around the size of a mustard seed.
While the eggs or nits are white, the live insects themselves range in shades of light brown to black.
Most people assume that pets are the main culprit for spreading head lice. However, the sole hosts of these pesky critters are humans.
The most alarming reason to get rid of head lice, besides the itch, is the fact that head lice are real bloodsuckers. These organisms feed on blood sourced from the scalp in order to survive. If left as-is, head lice could multiply rapidly, causing even greater itchiness and discomfort.
Nevertheless, studies show that head lice do not cause disease. However, head lice could cause secondary infections could occur due to excessive itchiness and abrasion of the skin.
Users could also get:
These, however, are some of the rare side effects of Spinosad. If these conditions persist, and in particular hair loss, contact your doctor immediately.
The prescribed dosage of Spinosad on average is one full bottle:
Spinosad is supplied in 120 ML bottles, containing 9 mg of spinosad per gram.
Note: Spinosad Topical Application is not intended for use in infants 6 months old and under.
Most over the counter medicines for head lice require multiple applications. However, this prescription is intended for one-time use only – except in extenuating circumstances. If the head lice do not clear up and live lice are detected at a follow-up visit, another dose may be prescribed for 7 days after the initial date of treatment.
Follow the directives provided by your pharmacist and/or medical provider. Some of the rules of thumb include practicing the following tips:
For best results, set enough time aside to complete the treatment.
Doctors recommend that an adult or caregiver apply the treatment to children’s hair and scalp:
No substantial drug contraindications have been reported for Spinosad topical suspension cream.
Over-the-Counter cosmetics, however, could negatively interact with prescription Spinosad. As a result, ask a medical professional for advice on when you can resume your regular hair care routine.
Before using Spinosad Topical suspension, read the instructions inserted in the pack carefully.
The following section provides a few precautions to help minimize the potential risks of using Spinosad for head lice.
Head lice have been a pervasive parasite that has plagued us for centuries. In fact, remains of dead lice have been found on Egyptian mummies unearthed from a bygone era.
One of the main reasons for its prevalence is that head lice are super easy to transmit through direct contact with an infected party.
Members of the same household, for example, may spread head lice back and forth. The cycle could continue indefinitely if proper measures aren’t taken. The following items are some of the most reported means of transporting head lice from one party to another:
Due to the high-risk of transmission in households, all members should be screened – and ideally by a healthcare professional.
To reduce the chances of transmission, all soft fabrics and hair tools in the house must be washed thoroughly in piping hot soapy water. Heat is a proven way to kill head lice and a host of other germs.
Note: Set your washer and dryer on the highest heat setting possible.
Spinosad treatments in and of itself will not completely wipe out head lice infestations in households. Patients will need to follow the complete treatment plan recommended by a healthcare provider to successfully eliminate head lice, which typically includes washing and rinsing soft fibers and hair tools.
Based on medical research, Spinosad is not intended for patients who are under the age of 6 months old. The following groups are more susceptible to more severe risks:
Spinosad is manufactured with benzyl alcohol, which predisposes infants to severe risks, some potentially fatal.
Even though Spinosad is exclusively applied externally on the skin and the drug cannot be absorbed systematically, it is important to inform your doctor if you are pregnant, nursing, or plan to be – before commencing treatment.
If you have sensitive skin or a history of allergies to certain medications or products, inform your doctor before using Spinosad.
This medicine is intended for topical use only. In the event of accidental ingestion, call 911 and the American Poison Control Centers immediately at (800) 222-1222.
To maintain the integrity of Spinosad, store at a room temperature of 25ºC (77ºF), and out of the reach of children and pets.
Discard of any unused or expired portion by taking it to a local pharmacy.
Spinosad topical suspension cream is effective for eliminating head lice infestations – a pervasive issue that has plagued us for centuries. Even though head lice aren’t dangerous, these critters cause the scalp to itch and also carry a stigma, despite the high rates of infestation year after year.
Patients are able to achieve lice-free status in just one application. If symptoms persist and head lice are not fully exterminated, a second treatment may be prescribed after a 7-day window has lapsed.
The medication is available by prescription only and should be used exactly as ordered. Spinosad is one part of the full treatment plan to exterminate head lice.
As lice infestations are challenging to eliminate, patients must take extra measures to wash all contaminated soft fibers within the household in hot and soapy water. This includes bedding, towels, rags, and all hair tools.
Spinosad topical creams are not recommended for infants under 6 months old as the ingredient, benzyl alcohol, could cause serious and fatal side effects to occur.