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Neural Leprosy: A case report

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Neural Leprosy: A case report

Alida Widiawaty, Emmy Soedarmi Sjamsoe-Daili, Taruli Olivia, Sri Linuwih Menaldi, Melani Marissa, Fitri Octaviana


Neural leprosy is characterized by neurological deficit without skin lesions, with a prevalence ranging from 1% to 17.7%. Diagnosis might be difficult and need a multidisciplinary approach. This is a case of axonal type motor and sensory polyradiculoneuropathy of the peripheral facial nerve. A 26-year-old woman was referred from the neurology clinic with facial paralysis, suspected as leprosy. Physical examinations were as follows: no skin lesions, left eye lagophthalmos, thickening of right lateral peroneal and bilateral posterior tibial nerves, sensory impairment, peripheral bilateral facial palsy, and wasting of bilateral distal small muscles of the hands, with normal autonomic function. Nerve Conduction Study revealed multiple demyelinating mononeuropathy of upper and lower extremities. Her serum anti-PGL-1 IgM level was 1721 μ/mL, but after three months of treatment with MDT-PB regimen, it increased to 2815μ/mL. Therefore, the treatment was switched to MDT-MB regimen and 30 mg prednisone. The patient is still undergoing treatment. There has been a slight improvement after treatment with MDT-MB regimen.  Nerve biopsy is the gold standard for diagnosis but has its limitations. However, serological test of anti PGL-1 can be a marker and a useful tool as an additional test to confirm the diagnosis, especially for patients with nerve impairments. Difficulties are due to the absence of skin lesions and neuropathy which may be caused by other diseases. Both diagnosis and treatment require multidisciplinary approach. Treatment given is intended to correct nerve damage and prevent further disabilities.


Keywords: Neural leprosy, anti-PGL-1, systemic corticosteroid, multidisciplinary approach

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