Nuvo® Method for Treating Head Lice
I am Dale Pearlman, MD, a
Welcome. This web site is provided by Dr. Dale Pearlman and his associates for informational purposes and any information provided on this web site does not constitute medical advice or recommendation for treatment. By visiting or using Dr. Pearlman’s site (Nuvoforheadlice.com) or other Nuvo services (“Nuvo Services” or “Services”), you agree to be bound by the following terms and conditions (the "Terms of Service" or “Terms”). The Nuvo Services contain many web pages (“Content Pages”).
The directions for the Nuvo® method treatment for head lice using Cetaphil® Gentle Skin Cleanser on this web site Are informational purposes only AND DO NOT CONSTITUTE MEDICAL ADVICE OR RECOMMENDATION FOR TREATMENT.
While Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser is legally sold as a cleanser in the U.S.A., it does not have the approval of the United States Food and Drug Administration for use as a treatment for head lice.
The Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser is formulated to be gentle and safe but may sting if it gets in the eyes. Suitable care is needed to prevent contact with the eyes. While no other adverse effects or reactions are anticipated, they are always a possibility.
You understand and agree to hold Dr. Dale Pearlman and his associates harmless in the event of unsuccessful results or any harmful side effects.
You understand that the Nuvo method for treating and diagnosing head lice has not been evaluated or approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Cetaphil® is a trademark of Galderma Laboratories, L.P. United States, which has not reviewed or endorsed the material on this web site.
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Each treatment application has three main steps.
The course of treatment consists of 3 applications done at one week intervals.
What you will need for one application.
How to apply the lotion-- detailed instructions.
Cover your child’s shoulders with a big dry bath towel to catch the lotion which will drip from the scalp.
To boost your cure rate you must cover all the lice with lotion. We advise you to apply so much lotion that it literally overflows the totally soaked scalp and drips off onto the towel.
Pour 8 oz of Cetaphil into the condiment dispenser.
Step 1. Begin with dry hair. Start at the left of the scalp. Make sure the nozzle is always touching the skin. Apply the lotion zigzag back and forth from front to back and then back to front. Apply to the entire scalp as you move forward until you reach the front of the scalp. Use 1/4 of the bottle.
While the lotion is shown in the diagrams below as yellow, actual Cetaphil Cleanser is a translucent pearly liquid which is not visible once dried on scalp.
Step 2. Now start at the back of the scalp. Again make sure the nozzle is always touching the skin. Change the direction of your zigzagging application now to “criss cross” the first pattern. Move zigzag front to back then back to front as you move from the right side to the left side of the scalp . Use again 1/4 of a bottle always touching the scalp with the bottle nozzle.
Step 3. Use your fingers to thoroughly massage the lotion throughout the scalp and hair.
Step 4. Redo steps 1, 2, and 3. Use up another 1/2 bottle of lotion. You now have used a whole bottle of the lotion.
Step 5. Does your child have long hair that reaches to the upper back? Then apply another 1/2 bottle of lotion to that large amount of hair from roots to tips and massage in thoroughly with your fingers.
Step 6. Wait 2 minutes for lotion to act.
Step 7. Comb out the lotion. You should seek to comb out as much excess Cetaphil lotion as possible. You are done when you can't get out any more lotion. The more you get out, the quicker will be the blow drying step which comes next. You may choose to first use a “detangler comb” if the hair is long or thick. Otherwise you can just start with the plain comb.
Step 8. If you need to remove nits to comply with your school’s “no nit policy,” then use the Licemeister® comb to carefully go through the entire scalp. It will remove many nits. If your child's school does not have such a policy, then skip this step. It adds 70% more work and is unnecessary to cure children of head lice.
Step 9. Blow dry the hair thoroughly, so that the scalp skin, hair roots, and full length of the hair are totally dry. You may use a detangler comb and/or your fingers to make the drying process easier. Anticipate that this will takes 3 times longer than drying hair that is just wet with water.
Step 10. You may style the hair now with a sterilized comb and/or brush. Please do not apply any styling gel, mousse, hair spray, or other cosmetic products to the hair while the dried Cetaphil lotion is on the hair.
Step 11. Leave the dried lotion on the child’s head for at least 8 hours, preferably overnight.
Step 12. To remove the lotion at the end of the treatment phase, you just shampoo with your usual shampoo, cream rinses, etc.
Recommended household clean-up
The three clean up steps should be done once a week at the time of the weekly treatment.
A Final Caution
To achieve cure, it is important to follow the directions carefully. We have seen the treatment fail when parents do not follow instructions. Avoid these four common mistakes:
a) Parents skimp on amount of Cetaphil Cleanser used.
You must use precisely the amount recommended in the detailed instructions or you will fail to coat all the lice with lotion. An uncoated louse will survive the treatment and may go on to reproduce. This is especially important for children with shoulder length or longer hair. You must remember to add an extra half bottle because of the long hair.
b) Parents apply the lotion incorrectly to the scalp.
Sometimes parents just squirt it on top of the hair and try to massage it in. This is NOT the way we explain in the instructions. You must achieve a uniform coverage of the entire scalp to be effective. It is critical to be touching the scalp with the nozzle the entire time you apply the lotion. The “criss cross” pattern of application assures even, complete coverage.
c) Parents do not completely dry the lotion on the scalp.
You must dry the scalp so that it is totally dry. The lotion works by drying onto the louse and plugging up its breathing holes. If you leave the scalp and hair partly wet then the lotion can be accidentally rubbed off when your child changes his shirt, lies down on his pillow, rubs his hair, or lies on the carpet or couch. By thoroughly drying the lotion in the scalp, the lotion adheres to the lice and kills them.
d) The timing between the applications is wrong.
You must use the treatment in three applications done at one-week intervals. The dried lotion kills lice and disrupts their life cycle. If you wait too long for the next application, then baby lice can grow into adults and lay eggs and continue the cycle.
If you have questions, please go to our Frequently Asked Questions page.
We regret that we cannot answer individual e-mail questions. However, if you feel at your question has not been answered on our web site, please send an e-mail to Mail@Nuvoforheadlice.com. From time to time, we will be posting the answers to additional FAQs.
Notice: The Nuvo method for treating and diagnosing head lice has not been evaluated or approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Cetaphil® is a trademark of Galderma Laboratories, L.P. United States, which has not reviewed or endorsed the material on this web site.