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Revista Brasileira de Epidemiologia

Print version ISSN 1415-790X


FERREIRA, Silvana Margarida Benevides; IGNOTTI, Eliane  and  GAMBA, Mônica Antar. Clinical and laboratory characteristics in the retreatment of leprosy relapse. Rev. bras. epidemiol. [online]. 2012, vol.15, n.3, pp.573-581. ISSN 1415-790X.

OBJECTIVE: To compare clinical and laboratory data of leprosy patients diagnosed in specialized services in the State of Mato Grosso, Brazil, during the initial treatment and the retreatment of relapse. METHODS: A cross-sectional study of patients with diagnosis of leprosy relapse was conducted in specialized health services of five cities, between 2005 and 2007. Initial treatment was described as t1 and relapse treatment as t2. DATA SOURCE: Sistema de Informação de Agravos de Notificação (Sinan - Reportable Diseases Information System), medical records, laboratory tests, and files of individual reports and of physical disability assessments. The chi-square test (c2) was applied at a significance level of 5%. RESULTS: The clinical dimorphic form prevailed in t2 when compared with t1 (39.6% versus 11.3%; p = 0.003); 20.8% of relapse cases showed a bacilloscopy index ≥ 4+ in relation to those in t1 (p = 0.034)]; an increase in the number of (17%) cases of relapse with physical disability at level 0 was found, compared to patients evaluated during the diagnosis (58.5% versus 41.5%); an increase (7.5%) in the recurrence of disabilities at level 2 was observed, when compared to t1 (9.4% versus a 9%); and there was a higher prevalence of cases not evaluated for disability between t1 (45.3%) and t2 (22.6%) (p = 0.040). CONCLUSION: Cases of relapse characterized the aggravation of the disease, indicated by the increase in the bacilloscopy index and level of physical disability. Attention should be paid to the diagnostic confirmation of relapse using bacilloscopy tests, especially in multibacillary cases, and systematic neurological assessment of all leprosy patients.

Keywords : Leprosy; Relapse; Epidemiology; Cross-Sectional Studies; Prevention and Control; Disease Reporting.

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