Wake-up call on bed bug insecticide poisoning

AMERICANS battling the rising scourge of bed bugs can end up poisoned by insecticide, a study finds.

Reports from public health officers in seven states between 2003 and 2010 showed there were 111 cases of bed bug-related poisoning.

Most cases were not severe and were triggered by excessive insecticide use or failure to wash treated bedding, the officers said.

However, a 65-year-old woman with comorbid conditions died after applying a bedbug insecticide “to her arms, sores on her chest, and on her hair before covering it with a plastic cap”.

MMWR 2011; 60;1269-74