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Lepr Rev. 2013 Sep;84(3):194-8.

Facial sensory loss in multi-bacillary leprosy patients.

Author information

  • 1Schieffelin Leprosy Research and Training Center, Karigiri, India.
  • 2Schieffelin Leprosy Research and Training Center, Karigiri, India.
  • 3British Columbia Centre for Epidemiologic & International Ophthalmology, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada.


Sensation over the face was estimated using the Semmes-Weinstein's monofilament (target force 0-05 gms) in a cohort of multi-bacillary (MB) patients whose clinical and ocular characteristics were available at the time of leprosy diagnosis. Among the 190 MB patients examined, 56 (30%) had areas of sensory impairment somewhere on the face and 43 (23%) had sensory deficit over the lids and/or the malar area. Lagophthalmos (adjusted OR 8.96, 95% CI 0.96-83.50), Type 1 reaction (aOR 2.47, 95% CI 1.11-5-52), history of reactions (aOR 6.36, 95% CI 2.40-16.85) and glove and stocking anaesthesia (aOR 3.49, 95% CI 1-40-8.70) were associated with impaired facial sensation. Hypoesthesia restricted to areas over the lids and/or malar area showed a stronger association with lagophthalmos (aOR 17.5, 95% CI 1.98-154.36). Loss of facial sensation appears to be associated with lagophthalmos in MB patients.

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