Top expert on lice visits SA

One of the world’s leading experts on parasites, Professor Heinz Mehlhorn, will visit South Africa in September to share his unique insights on lice and in particular, how to avoid infestations. 

German-based, Prof Mehlhorn is a prolific author, having penned 29 works, including the encyclopaedia of Parasitology, (2 vols Sprincer, New York, 2008) and is chairman of the department of Zoomorphology, Cytology and Parasitology at Düsseldorf University, Germany. 

He has spent his life studying parasites and producing globally acclaimed ground breaking work on these parasites. He will spend a week in SA from 19 September on a seminar tour to the health industry. 

In South Africa, head lice is common among children, with studies showing that up to half of all South African children surveyed have suffered infestations at some stage in their lives. 

Now, for the first time, lice can be prevented through a safe, non-toxic, nature-based preventative spray, Picksan NoLice!, which has notched up huge successes in Europe and which has been formulated by Mehlhorn. 

Giulia Criscuolo, responsible pharmacist for OTC Pharma SA, which markets and distributes nature-basedPicksan NoLice!, says head lice are extremely contagious, placing everyone at risk. However, children aged three to 12 years are most prone as they play very close together, passing the parasites on to each other.  

Head lice are small wingless crawling parasites that feed on tiny amounts of blood every two to three hours.  Lice bites cause itching which result in skin irritation and even infection.  

Although there are no comprehensive statistics available, a study carried by PubMed Central, a US based medical archive, shows the prevalence of infestations in Asia at up to 59% of those surveyed with the rate in Europe up to 22.4%, and Africa at up to 58%. See here

Such is the impact that Google shows up to half a million ‘head lice’ searches per month.

In addition to the health impact, the stigma of lice infestations can also be damaging. One in 10 parents in the UK said their child had been the victim of cruel jibes as a result of having

head lice while 15 per cent of parents said they had felt victimised by teachers because of infestations.

Lice occur exclusively on humans and prefer clean hair. There are a multitude of products on the market to treat lice infestation and only a few which claim repellency and protection from infestation.  Most of these contain harmful insecticides which may permeate the skin, causing damage.  In addition, head lice have been proven to develop immunities against most insecticides rendering them ineffective after a while. 

It has been shown that a combination of the MelAza extract and the compound paramenthane -3,8-diol (which is also found in Eucalyptus) act synergistically and are able to protect human hair for at least seven hours from invasion of head lice.  Picksan NoLice! preventative spray contains both essential compounds. 

Mehlhorn discovered that lice dislike these substances, which consist primarily of repellent odours. Due to their natural active ingredients, developing immunities to these substances is highly unlikely. 

Based on natural repellents which some plants possess, Picksan NoLice! does not contain allergenic essential oil constituents and is suitable for adults and children over the age of two. 

Picksan NoLice! is recommended by leading European doctors and is available in all health shops, pharmacies, Dis-Chem, Clicks, Pick n Pay and Medi-Rite. 

For more info, see call Giulia Criscuolo on 0861 998880.

Issued on behalf of OTC Pharma SA by:

Leap Communications

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