Medicines & Supplements A to Z > Malathion


Last updated on 09/07/2021.

Overview   |   Dosage   |    Side Effects   |   Precautions  |   Tips  |   Where To Buy  




DRUG CLASS: Anthelmintics

SUB CLASS: Pediculicides

USED FOR: Head pediculosis

– 0.5% (lotion)

What is Malathion for?

Malathion belongs to a class of medications called organophosphate pediculicides. It disrupts the central nervous systems of parasites, causing muscle paralysis and death. It also prevents the hatching of parasitic nits (eggs). It is used in the treatment of head lice infestations.

How to use it?

Malathion is available as a lotion that can be used on the skin. For the treatment of head lice infestation, apply a sufficient amount of lotion to dry hair and scalp, and allow it to dry naturally, then shampoo and rinse after 8-12 hours. This may be repeated after 7-9 days if lice is still present.

What are the side effects of Malathion?

Common side effects of Malathion include dry hair, skin and scalp irritation, and skin reactions.

Who should not take Malathion?

– People allergic to Malathion or any component of the formulation.
– Children under 6 years.

Pharmacist Tips:

– Avoid exposing your hair to heat sources such as open flames and hairdryers.
– Avoid contact with eyes and mucous membranes.
– Avoid applying the medication on open wounds.

Common dosing schedule:
Malathion is applied once weekly.

This schedule is for reference only, adjustments may be made according to individual needs.

Some common medications Malathion may interact with:
Malathion has no known interactions with common medications.

Where to buy Malathion in Hong Kong?

In Hong Kong, Malathion is an over-the-counter medicine and can be purchased without a prescription from any retail outlet in Hong Kong. This includes grocery stores, convenience stores, medicine shops, and pharmacies. It can also be obtained from doctors. To find a pharmacy near you, refer to the list of pharmacies (“Authorized Sellers of Poisons”) from the Hong Kong Department of Health.

For more information about drug names and ingredients, you can visit Hong Kong’s Drug Office at

Need more information?

For detailed information about the use of Malathion in children, pregnancy and breastfeeding, and for questions about drug interactions, please check with your pharmacist or doctor.

Disclaimer: our goal is to provide you with the most relevant drug information and common dosage for Hong Kong. This information does not constitute medical advice. For specific treatment recommendations and advice, always discuss with your doctor or pharmacist, and follow the instructions included with your specific medicine.