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Trop Med Int Health. 2011 Apr;16(4):510-3. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-3156.2011.02729.x. Epub 2011 Jan 24.

Emergence of a new focus of anthroponotic cutaneous leishmaniasis due to Leishmania tropica in rural communities of Bam district after the earthquake, Iran.

Author information

1
Dermatology and Leishmaniasis Research Center, Kerman University of Medical Sciences, Kerman, Iran. iraj.sharifi@yahoo.com

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

To describe a new emerging focus of anthroponotic cutaneous leishmaniasis (ACL) due to Leishmania tropica in rural areas of Dehbakry county, south-eastern Iran, after the earthquake of 2003.

METHODS:

House-to-house survey of 3884 inhabitants for active leishmaniasis lesions or scars. The diagnosis was confirmed by smears, cultures and identification of the parasite by polymerase chain reaction (PCR).

RESULTS:

All age groups were affected, although patients ≤10 years of age showed the highest rate of infection (P = 0.0001). The overall prevalence rate was 5.3%; 6.3% in females and 4.3% in males. Of 204 cases, 1.8% had active sores and 3.5% had scars, with a significant difference between the sexes (P = 0.005). 47% of the lesions were on the face and 77.9% had one lesion. The incidence rose gradually 2004-2005, but grew exponentially 2006-2008. Electrophoresis of PCR products indicated that L. tropica was the causative agent.

CONCLUSIONS:

The current emergence was unexpected in this rural locality, where no previous history of CL was recorded. According to our knowledge this is the first report of a gradually establishing new ACL focus in rural communities after the 2003 earthquake.

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