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Wade histoid leprosy revisited


An 18-year-old man presented with a 4-year history of erythematous patches on the trunk, followed 2-years later by multiple nodules, mostly located on the limbs, and distal paresthesias. Two close contacts were treated for leprosy during his childhood. Histopathological examination revealed a histiocytic infiltrate with acid-fast bacilli on Ziehl-Neelsen stain. The slit-skin and nasal smears showed numerous acid-fast bacilli. The correlation between clinical, epidemiological, histopathological, and microbiological features allowed the diagnosis of lepromatous leprosy, histoid variant. Multidrug therapy as recommended by the WHO was initiated. A rapid and sustained improvement was seen. Histoid leprosy is a rare manifestation of lepromatous leprosy, first described by Wade in 1960. Since then few cases have been reported, the majority of them from countries with a high prevalence of the disease. Early recognition and treatment are of most importance to prevent neurological disabilities and achieve epidemiological control.

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