Cutaneous leishmaniasis. Unusual disease in Portugal?.

Lenea Campino, Pedro Abranches


Due to its morbility and disfiguring scars, cutaneous leishmaniasis is a serious Public Health problem. The incidence of the disease, world wide, is estimated to be of 1 million to 1.5 million cases per year. In Portugal, it has been considered a rare disease and sporadic cases have been described. In Southwest Europe, Leishmania infantum has been the only agent responsible for the autochthonous cases of cutaneous leishmaniasis. In 1994, in an portuguese clinical case, the parasite isolated from a cutaneous lesion was identified as L. infantum zymodeme MON-29. As described in this work cutaneous leishmaniasis should not be considered, any longer, a rare disease in Portugal.

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