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Revista da Sociedade Brasileira de Medicina Tropical

Print version ISSN 0037-8682On-line version ISSN 1678-9849


AQUINO, Dorlene Maria Cardoso de; CALDAS, Arlene de Jesus Mendes; SILVA, Antônio Augusto Moura da  and  COSTA, Jackson Maurício Lopes. Profile of the leprosy patients of hiperendemic area Amazonian Maranhão, Brazil. Rev. Soc. Bras. Med. Trop. [online]. 2003, vol.36, n.1, pp.57-64. ISSN 0037-8682.

An epidemiological cross-sectional study of 207 patients with leprosy disease, was undertaken between August 1998 to november 2000, aiming at evaluating the socioeconomic, demographic and ambiental profiles of the patients as well as physical incapacity due to the disease. The study was performed in the municipality of Buriticupu-Maranhão state, a hiperendemic leprosy area in the Amazonian Maranhão. The level of incapacity was assessed from parameters established by the Brazilian Health Minister. The clinical evaluation and the results of the physical tests were registered in a standardized form. It was observed a predominance of married people (45,9%), with low level of education (56%), being lend workers (40,1%), with familiar income to the minimum wage (76,3%), aged from 14 to 44 years (63,3%), males (60,9%) and brown (67,6%); 44% living in mud huts, 82,6% deposited their excrements in cesspits and 63,8% do not treat the drinking water, 58% utilized well-water and 51,7% do not use treated water for ingestion. The most affected segments of the body were the feet (62,3%), eyes (51,2%) end hands (7,2%), being the higher percentage of physical incapacitaties found among the patients bearing the borderline form of the disease (93%) mainly hands and feet, and in the virchowian form greatest frequency of eyes incapacities. It is concluded that the hyperendemicity associated with the precarious socioeconomic conditions and with a high level of physical incapacities may be involved with the living quality of the patients.

Keywords : Leprosy; Patient profile; Physical incapacity; Maranhão state.

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