A clinico pathological correlation in leprosy in a tertiary care teaching institution


  • Ramesh A. Department of Dermatology, Venereology and Leprosy, Madras Medical College, Rajiv Gandhi Government General Hospital, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
  • Sampath V. Department of Dermatology, Venereology and Leprosy, Madras Medical College, Rajiv Gandhi Government General Hospital, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
  • Shvedha M. Department of Dermatology, Venereology and Leprosy, Madras Medical College, Rajiv Gandhi Government General Hospital, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India




Leprosy, Mycobacterium leprae, Histopathology


Background: Leprosy is a chronic infectious granulomatous disease caused by Mycobacterium leprae. The disease primarily affects peripheral nervous system, the skin and certain other tissues. It is a spectral disease which is classified into five groups based on clinical, histopathological and bacteriological and immunological criteria as tuberculoid (TT), borderline tuberculoid (BT), mid-borderline (BB), borderline lepromatous (BL), lepromatous (LL) according to Ridley-Jopling classification. Adequate clinical information combined with histopathology and bacteriological index is helpful not only in classification of different types of leprosy, but also useful for management of cases.The objective of the study was to correlate clinical diagnosis with histopathological findings of leprosy.

Methods: A retrospective study was conducted for one year from January to December 2018 in Leprosy clinic, Department of Dermatology, Rajiv Gandhi Government General Hospital and Madras Medical College, Chennai. The histopathological findings were compared with clinical diagnosis.

Results: A total number of cases attended leprosy clinic from January 2018 to December 2018 was 167 cases, among those 49 clinically diagnosed cases were included in the study. Out of 49 cases, maximum number of patients belonged to 30-50 years age group. Male to female ratio was 3.9: 1. Hypopigmented, hypoaesthetic patches were commonly seen. Clinically as well as histopathologically BT leprosy was common.The maximum histological correlation seen in lepromatous leprosy (100%) followed by BT (80%).

Conclusions: The study emphasises the role of skin biopsy in confirming the clinical diagnosis of leprosy and also as a therapeutic guide.


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