Title: Risk Factors for grade 2 Disability in Leprosy at the time of Diagnosis
Authors: Dr Reeba M Mani, Dr Swapna Dominic, Dr Bindu Vadakkayil, Dr Sarita S
Background: In the post elimination era of leprosy the major challenge posed by the disease is disability prevention and rehabilitation. Hence studies on disability burden in leprosy should be top priority of research.
Objectives: To document grade 2 disability due to leprosy at the time of diagnosis in patients above 12 years attending a tertiary referral centre and to determine the association between age, sex, diagnostic delay, multibacillary disease and leprareaction with grade 2 disability.
Methods: Retrospective analysis of case records of leprosy patients who attended a tertiary care centre from 1.1 2017 to 31.12.2018 was carried out to study the grade 2 disability pattern at diagnosis and its risk factors.
Results: During the study period 27/52 leprosy patients (51.9%) who attended our tertiary referral centre had grade 2 disability at diagnosis. Male sex, diagnostic delay, disease manifesting with neurological symptoms as initial event and disease requiring mulibacillary treatment were found to be statistically significant risk factors for grade 2 disability.
Conclusions: Our finding of more than 50% cases manifesting grade 2 disability at diagnosis highlights the role rehabilitation specialists in managing the disease. We propose leprosy need a multidisciplinary approach to improve the quality of life of the affected. Retrospective nature of the study and small sanple size were our limitations
Keywords: Leprosy, Multidisciplinary approach, Grade 2 disability.