Letters Mosquito repellents for travellers

Authors’ reply to Rivers

BMJ 2015; 350 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.h1577 (Published 24 March 2015) Cite this as: BMJ 2015;350:h1577
  1. James G Logan, senior lecturer in medical entomology1,
  2. Ron H Behrens, senior lecturer1,
  3. Nina M Stanczyk, research fellow1
  1. 1Department of Disease Control, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, London WC1E 7HT, UK
  1. james.logan{at}lshtm.ac.uk

Rivers discusses the application of insect repellents to the face.1 2

Application of a repellent to the face may not always be needed because mosquito bites occur mainly on other parts of the body—for example, around the feet and ankles with Anopheles gambiae, the main malaria vector. Bites on the face are often avoided because people tend to notice mosquitoes landing on their face and defend themselves before the bite occurs. However, travellers who think that they are at risk of being bitten on the face can wear repellent if the instructions on the bottle allow it.

We agree that the repellent should be sprayed onto the hands first and then applied carefully to the face to prevent accidental ingestion. Parents should apply the repellent to children.


Cite this as: BMJ 2015;350:h1577


  • Competing interests: Authors of the manuscript.


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