70. Leprosy (Hansen Disease)

  1. Alan D. Irvine MD, FRCPI, FRCP2,3,
  2. Peter H. Hoeger MD4,5 and
  3. Albert C. Yan MD, FAAP, FAAD6,7
  1. Sunil Dogra MD, DNB, MNAMS and
  2. Amrinder J. Kanwar MD, FAMS

Published Online: 24 MAY 2011

DOI: 10.1002/9781444345384.ch70

Harper's Textbook of Pediatric Dermatology, Volume 1, 2, Third Edition

Harper's Textbook of Pediatric Dermatology, Volume 1, 2, Third Edition

How to Cite

Dogra, S. and Kanwar, A. J. (2011) Leprosy (Hansen Disease), in Harper's Textbook of Pediatric Dermatology, Volume 1, 2, Third Edition (eds A. D. Irvine, P. H. Hoeger and A. C. Yan), Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781444345384.ch70

Editor Information

  1. 2

    Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland

  2. 3

    Our Lady's Children's Hospital, Dublin, Ireland

  3. 4

    University of Hamburg, Hamburg, Germany

  4. 5

    Catholic Children's Hospital Wilhelmstift, Hamburg, Germany

  5. 6

    University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, Philadelphia, PA, USA

  6. 7

    The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA, USA

Author Information

  1. Department of Dermatology, Venereology and Leprology, Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh, India

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 24 MAY 2011
  2. Published Print: 3 JUN 2011

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9781405176958

Online ISBN: 9781444345384



  • children;
  • deformities;
  • elimination;
  • Hansen disease;
  • leprosy;
  • multidrug therapy;
  • neuritis;
  • reactions;
  • relapses;
  • treatment


Leprosy is a chronic, very mildly infectious disease of the skin and peripheral nerves caused by Mycobacterium leprae. The damage to peripheral nerves results in sensory and motor impairment with the characteristic deformities and disabilities so deeply associated with the disease. The World Health Organization-recommended multidrug therapy (MDT) has proved to be the most important landmark in the chemotherapy of leprosy, demonstrating tremendous success in the control of the disease, a significant fall in the number of patients worldwide and acceptable relapse rates. Research for more effective and bactericidal drugs is in progress. Leprosy among children is a public health problem reflecting the disease transmission in the community and the efficiency of control programmes. The care of patients with nerve function impairment, reactions, relapses and prevention of disabilities and rehabilitation will remain an imperative task for healthcare providers even in the postelimination era.