Piperonyl butoxide/pyrethrum extract (On the skin)


Piperonyl Butoxide (PIP-er-oh-nil byoo-TOX-ide), Pyrethrum Extract (pye-REE-thrum EX-trackt)

Treats head lice, pubic lice (crab lice), and body lice.

Brand Name(s)

Rid Mousse, Tisit Blue Gel, Rid, Good Neighbor Lice Solution Kit, Good Sense Lice Killing, Good Sense Complete Lice Treatment, Tisit

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used

You should not use this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to piperonyl butoxide or pyrethrum extract.

How to Use This Medicine

Foam, Gel/Jelly, Shampoo, Spray

  • This medicine comes with patient instructions. Read and follow these instructions carefully. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.
  • If you are using this medicine without a prescription, follow the instructions on the medicine label.
  • This medicine is for use on the skin and scalp only. Do not get it in your eyes, nose, mouth, or vagina. Do not use on skin areas that have cuts or scrapes. If it does get on these areas, rinse it off right away.
  • Do not inhale this medicine. Use it in an open air. Make sure not to puncture or burn the container.
  • Shake the medicine well before using.
  • Apply RID® to dry hair or other affected areas. Allow the medicine to remain for no longer than 10 minutes. Rinse well with warm water and soap or shampoo, then towel dry. For head lice, apply the medicine first in the areas behind the ears and back of the neck. Keep your eyes tightly closed and protect eyes with a washcloth or towel while applying the medicine.
  • Comb your damp hair, lifting 1- to 2-inch wide strand of hair, in a firm and even motion using a fine-toothed comb or a special lice or nit (egg) comb. Remove any lice or nits by hand using a throw-away glove. Repeat combing if necessary.
  • Keep your comb clean and check your hair daily for any lice or nits that you missed to prevent lice from coming back.
  • You may need a second treatment with RID® within 7 to 10 days to kill any newly hatched lice.

How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine

  • Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat or open flame, moisture, and direct light.
  • Ask your pharmacist, doctor, or health caregiver about the best way to dispose of the used medicine container and any leftover medicine after you have finished your treatment. You will also need to throw away old medicine after the expiration date has passed.
  • Keep all medicine away from children and never share your medicine with anyone.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Do not use cosmetics or other skin care products on the treated skin areas.

Warnings While Using This Medicine

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, or if you have trouble breathing, asthma, or any allergy to ragweed.
  • This medicine should not be used on lice in your eyebrows or eyelashes unless your doctor tells you to.
  • All members of your household and your sexual partner should be checked, because lice are easily spread from one person to another.
  • To prevent re-infection: Wash your clothes, bedding, and personal items (including washcloths, towels, hats, scarves, combs, brushes, wigs, hairpieces) in hot soapy water.
  • Do not use this medicine on your child unless approved by your doctor.
  • Do not use this medicine for a skin problem that has not been checked by your doctor.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they get worse, call your doctor.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Skin or scalp itching, rash, or redness.

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088

Version Info

  • Last Reviewed on 06/12/2013

A.D.A.M., Inc. is accredited by URAC, also known as the American Accreditation HealthCare Commission (www.urac.org). URAC's accreditation program is an independent audit to verify that A.D.A.M. follows rigorous standards of quality and accountability. A.D.A.M. is among the first to achieve this important distinction for online health information and services. Learn more about A.D.A.M.'s editorial policy, editorial process and privacy policy. A.D.A.M. is also a founding member of Hi-Ethics and subscribes to the principles of the Health on the Net Foundation (www.hon.ch)

The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997- 2013 A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.