Leishmaniasis recidiva cutis in New World cutaneous leishmaniasis

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Leishmaniasis recidiva cutis (LRC) is rare in New World leishmaniasis. Only seven cases have been reported so far.

Materials and methods

Four cases are reported here. Parasite diagnosis was performed by classical methods of touch preparations, histopathologic sections, and cultures. In addition, the detection of parasite DNA by the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was performed in all cases.


Parasites were detected by at least one of the classical methods in all primary lesions; however, only the PCR was positive in the recidivant lesions.


LRC cases most likely represent a reactivation of an initial infection, probably due to the persistence of parasites in scarred tissue. Although lupoid leishmaniasis (LL) has been used as a synonym of LRC, a clear difference between LRC and LL can be defined as LL is the initial clinical presentation while LRC is a recurrent lesion.


The results indicate that it is not appropriate to use these two denominations as synonyms. The designation of LRC should be maintained in order to define recidives occurring at the border of an old scar of cutaneous leishmaniasis, avoiding the confusion with the lupoid form of the disease.

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