Pest Management: Insects and Medicine

Some insects are beneficial to medicine for testing, research, or for the chemicals that can be extracted. Pest management practices usually try to control insect populations but ancient man was using insects in medicine long before our laboratories decided to try and eradicate them.

Conservative medicine finds its roots in ancient techniques that may have seemed like magic at one time. Army ants in South America, India and Africa were used to close wounds, even though these creatures would kill and eat anything that got in their way. The practice has been documented to at least 3000 years ago and included suturing sliced intestines, which were particularly deadly wounds in battle. Some cultures still use these and Carpenter ants as sutures, placing the large mandibles on either side of the open wound and then snipping off the body after the ant clamps down, closing the wound. Modern medicine used stitches to replicate the technique and eventually staples.

Flies were also used to cleanse wounds that were infected. Flies were naturally attracted to the festering wounds and would lay eggs; the resultant larva would eat the infected flesh and leave the good flesh intact. This practice is still used in extreme cases of osteomyelitis, a bone infection that can be deadly if not properly treated.  The larva are grown in laboratories and sterilized; these insects are still saving human lives.

Research on cockroaches and other insects has led to many advances in medicine that cannot be ignored. Cockroaches, for instance, have shown researchers the importance of contact with others of their kind. Cockroaches that are removed from their group at a young age develop more slowly both in size and in temperament. Once reunited with their nestlings the immature creatures rapidly catch up. This has proven true in humans as well and may one day answer questions about our psychological growth. When children are isolated they may also experience slower growth and a more volatile or depressive temperament.

Insects are important in nature and in science; without the millions of specimens known to us, we would not have come this far. There are an estimated 30 million species on insect on planet earth and more are being discovered every year. To date there are over 900,000 species known to man, with nearly 10,000 documented ant species and 4000 species of cockroach. Insects make up an estimated 90% of all creatures and so it is important to study and understand them.

Pests in Chandler are controlled inside the home and on residential and commercial properties because of the possibility of disease or damage. Pest management professionals are committed to keeping nature’s insects out of your home where they become a threat. Remember that we can live in harmony with the oldest species’ on the planet when we make sure they stay outside, where they belong.



Scottsdale AZ –

Termite Control Arizona

6501 East Greenway Parkway #103
Scottsdale AZ

(480) 582-1085