Journal Article

Visceral Leishmaniasis during Childhood in Southern Greece

H. C. Maltezou, C. Siafas, M. Mavrikou, P. Spyridis, C. Stavrinadis, Th. Karpathios and D. A. Kafetzis

in Clinical Infectious Diseases

Published on behalf of Infectious Diseases Society of America

Volume 31, issue 5, pages 1139-1143
Published in print November 2000 | ISSN: 1058-4838
Published online November 2000 | e-ISSN: 1537-6591 | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1086/317455
Visceral Leishmaniasis during Childhood in Southern Greece

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Records were reviewed of 82 immunocompetent children (median age, 2.5 years) from southern Greece who were diagnosed with visceral leishmaniasis from 1986 through 1998. Forty-nine (58%) patients originated from the city of Athens; of them, 46 (94%) lived by hills bordering the city. The median interval from the onset of symptoms to admission was 10 days. Fever and splenomegaly were observed in >95% of the patients. Thrombocytopenia was the most frequent hematological finding (80%). All patients were treated with meglumine antimonate; 20 (24%) of them were partially treated on an outpatient basis. Rapid clinical response was noted in all patients but one. Five patients relapsed; 3 responded to reintroduction of meglumine antimonate, 1 responded to liposomal amphotericin B, and 1 underwent splenic artery ligation. We conclude that pentavalent antimonials remain the first choice of treatment for visceral leishmaniasis in immunocompetent children in areas where resistance has not become a problem. It is possible to treat affected patients with outpatient administration of these agents, making them feasible options for therapy.

Journal Article.  3101 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Infectious Diseases ; Immunology ; Public Health and Epidemiology ; Microbiology

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