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Clinical and Epidemiologic Profile of Cutaneous Leishmaniasis in Colombian Children: Considerations for Local Treatment

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  • Centro Internacional de Entrenamiento e Investigaciones Medicas-CIDEIM (International Center for Medical Research and Training), Cali, Colombia

Treatment alternatives have seldom been evaluated in children with cutaneous leishmaniasis (CL). We examine the clinical/epidemiological profile of children with CL considering international guidelines for local treatment. Descriptive analyses were conducted using International Center for Medical Research and Training (CIDEIM) case reports of parasitologically diagnosed patients ≤ 14 years of age from 2004 to 2010. Eligibility for local treatment based on World Health Organization/Pan American Health Organization (WHO/PAHO) criteria was determined. Among 380 children, 90% presented lesions of < 3 months duration, 54% presented single lesions < 30 mm in diameter, and 45% were ≤ 5 years old. Lesions on the head and neck were more frequent among children 0–5 years, and lesions below the head/neck were more frequent among 11- to 14-year-old children (P = 0.004). Using PAHO and WHO criteria, 26% and 53% of children, respectively, were eligible for local treatment. Recommended local treatments for New World CL have potential but limited applicability in children. Individual risk–benefit assessment and effectiveness data in children may increase eligibility.

Author Notes

* Address correspondence to Nancy Gore Saravia, Centro Internacional de Entrenamiento e Investigaciones Medicas, Cra 125 #19-225, Cali, Colombia. E-mail: saravian@cideim.org.co

Financial support: Support for this study was provided in part by Swiss National Foundation Grant IZ70Z0-131421 and COLCIENCIAS Contracts 222951928964 and 222951928948.

Authors' address: Victor M. Blanco, Alexandra Cossio, Javier D. Martinez, and Nancy Gore Saravia, International Center for Medical Research and Training (CIDEIM) Cra 125 #19-225, Cali, Colombia, E-mails: bpvictormanuel@gmail.com, acossio@cideim.org.com, jdmartinezb@gmail.com, and saravian@cideim.org.co.

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