Only one type of leech can be used in hirudotherapy.
The following are the distinctive features of the subspecies of leeches.
Leech medical apothecary - Hirudo medicinalis. (Officinalis). On the back - two orange longitudinal strips with uniformly repeated extensions. The ventral side is olive-green, one-colored, with black longitudinal stripes on the sides.
Medical leech medicinal Hirudo medicinalis. Along the dorsal surface there are four narrow, pairwise arranged bands with uniformly repeated expansions filled with black spots of drop-shaped form.
Leech medical eastern - Hirudo medicinalis orientalis. Has a darker green color, along the back - narrow orange stripes, covered at regular intervals by black quadrangular spots. The abdomen is black with green spots located in pairs through the same intervals. Practically the leech is painted black, and on the abdomen there are numerous black spots. This subspecies of leeches is not bred in artificially created conditions, therefore it is not allowed to be used for artificial purposes