STD Home > Diagnosing Pubic Lice

A pubic lice infestation is diagnosed by looking closely through pubic hair for nits (eggs), nymphs, or adults. It may be difficult to find a nymph or adult; there are usually few of them, and they can quickly move away from light. If crawling lice are not seen, finding nits confirms that a person is infested and should be treated. Nits and adults are usually visible to the naked eye, but a hand lens or light may help when diagnosing public lice.
Up to one-third of people diagnosed with pubic lice have another sexually transmitted disease (STD).
If you are unsure about a possible pubic lice infestation, or if treatment is not successful, see a healthcare provider for a diagnosis.
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
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