Pthirus pubis

Virtual Microscope


  • Insect: Three part body (head/thorax /abdomen) and 6 legs
  • Dorso-ventrally flattened, size 2-3 mm
  • Wingless
  • Large claws
  • Lice eggs (nits) attached to scalp hair or clothing or pubic hair
  • Permanent ectoparasites
  • Incomplete metamorphosis (hemimetabole) (larvaes look the same as adults), life cycle from egg to adult 17-21 days
  • All stages of development (larvaes + adults) are blood feeders, P.vest. can starve for 7 days
  • Adults become 4 weeks old
  • The female lays about 3-4 eggs per day      


  • Pubic lice infestation, also known as "Pediculosis pubis" or "crabs," can result in potential severe allergic reactions, including itching (pruritus)