Pill Offers Accidental Solution to Bed-Bug Woes

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Nov. 14 2012 4:17 PM

A Pill To Kill Bed Bugs?

The answer to your bed-bug problem may not be a spray, but a pill.

Doctors at Eastern Virginia Medical School found bed bugs died while feasting on the blood of people who took Merck's Stromectol, a drug generally used to treat worm parasites.
Four of the doctors themselves ingested Stromectol, generically called ivermectin and allowed six bed bugs to dine on their blood. Three hours later, 60 percent of the bed bugs died. The drug was effective even two days after it was ingested.

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The research suggests ivermectin could be a useful weapon against the reddish-brown, fabric-dwelling critters, especially in big cities like New York, where nearly 400,000 people were infested with bed bugs in 2009.