|Description:||This 2006 photograph depicted a frontal view of an adult bedbug, Cimex lectularius, as it was in the process of ingesting a blood meal from the arm of a “voluntary” human host.|
Bedbugs are not vectors in nature of any known human disease. Although some disease organisms have been recovered from bedbugs under laboratory conditions, none have been shown to be transmitted by bedbugs outside of the laboratory. Bedbug bites are difficult to diagnose due to the variability in bite response between people, and due to the change in skin reaction for the same person over time. It is best to collect and identify bedbugs to confirm bites. Bedbugs are responsible for loss of sleep, discomfort, disfiguring from numerous bites and occasionally bites may become infected. (See the link to copyright information below)
The common bedbug C. lectularius is a wingless, red-brown, blood-sucking insect that grows up to 7 mm in length and has a lifespan from 4 months up to 1 year. Bedbugs hide in cracks and crevices in beds, wooden furniture, floors, and walls during the daytime and emerge at night to feed on their preferred host, humans.
Bedbug bites can result in clinical manifestations; the most common are small clusters of extremely pruritic, erythematous papules or wheals that represent repeated feedings by a single bedbug. Less common but more severe manifestations include grouped vesicles, giant urticaria, and hemorrhagic bullous eruptions. Bites should be managed symptomatically with topical emollients, topical corticosteroids, oral antihistamines, or some combination of these treatments.