A clinicoepidemiological study of familial leprosy

Original Article

Author Details : Shashikiran A R, Laxmi B Horatti, Dilip Kumar N R*

Volume : 7, Issue : 3, Year : 2021

Article Page : 261-265


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Background: Hansen’s disease (also known as leprosy) is an infection caused by Mycobacterium leprae which can affect the skin, mucous membranes and nerves. It is known to spread among and infect family members. There are very few published studies pertaining to family leprosy conducted in India and worldwide.
Aim: To find the prevalence of familial leprosy and to know the clinicoepidemiological patterns of these cases.
Settings and Design: Observational study.
Material and Methods: This was a descriptive study conducted for a period of five years from 2013-2018. The study population included all new documented cases of leprosy visiting our out-patient department during the study period. All the patients were diagnosed as leprosy on histopathological confirmation or by the presence of cardinal signs of leprosy according to the world health organization (WHO) definition. The data collected was analysed by simple descriptive statistics. Permission to conduct the study was taken from institutional ethical committee. Consent was taken from index case and family members.
Results: A total of 302 new leprosy cases with 18 index cases (n=18) whose family members were affected, accounting for the prevalence of 5.96 %. Total number of family members with documented leprosy (old or newly detected) was 26. So, the total number of leprosy cases were 44 (index cases + family members). Out of the 18 families, 4 families had more than one person who was affected. 8 cases (18.18%) of Childhood leprosy were noted. Among the index cases 4 cases (22%) of paucibacillary leprosy were seen and 14 cases (78%) of multibacillary leprosy was seen. Among the family members, 18 cases of paucibacillary
leprosy were seen and 8 cases of multibacillary leprosy were seen. Conjugal leprosy was seen in 10 families accounting for the prevalence of 3.31%.
Conclusion: Our study intends to emphasize the importance of examining the close contacts of a case of leprosy, especially the family members in whom the incidence of leprosy could be very high. By way of identifying leprosy cases early in its course we may be able to prevent deformities to a great extent.

Keywords: Leprosy, Familial leprosy, Childhood leprosy, Conjugal leprosy

How to cite : Shashikiran A R, Horatti L B, Dilip Kumar N R, A clinicoepidemiological study of familial leprosy. IP Indian J Clin Exp Dermatol 2021;7(3):261-265

Copyright © 2021 by author(s) and IP Indian J Clin Exp Dermatol. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License (creativecommons.org)

Article History

Received : 22-06-2021

Accepted : 25-06-2021

Available online : 06-09-2021

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