Case report: Mucosal leishmaniasis presenting with nasal septum perforation after almost thirty years

Jesùs Rojas-Jaimes, Helena L. Frischtak, Jose Arenas, Andres G. Lescano

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2 Scopus citations


Mucosal leishmaniasis (ML) is associated with progressive tissue destruction and granuloma formation, often after a considerable period of latency from an initial cutaneous infection. We report a case of recurrent epistaxis of 3 years duration and nasopharyngeal obstruction in a woman with treated cutaneous leishmaniasis nearly 30 years before and with no further exposure to Leishmania. Computed tomography revealed nasal septal perforation and histopathology demonstrated chronic inflammation. Microscopy was negative for amastigotes, but molecular testing of nasal mucosa biopsy detected Leishmania (Viannia) braziliensis. The patient underwent 28 days of treatment with IV sodium stibogluconate and her symptoms improved significantly. Sixteen months after treatment, she continues to have episodic epistaxis and detectable parasite load in her nasal lesion. Although ML is known to take years to decades to develop, there are few reported cases in the literature of such a long latency period. This report highlights the importance of considering ML in the differential diagnosis of chronic epistaxis in countries where leishmaniasis is endemic or in immigrants from these countries, even when presentation occurs decades after leaving an endemic region.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)327-330
Number of pages4
JournalAmerican Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2018


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