Immunochemotherapy for cutaneous leishmaniasis: a controlled trial using killed Leishmania (Leishmania) amazonensis vaccine plus antimonial


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Abstract

BackgroundLeishmaniasis is endemic in 88 countries in the world, and 350 million individuals are at risk of acquiring the disease. Treatment for American cutaneous leishmaniasis (ACL) is long, expensive, and associated with important side-effects.MethodsIn this double-blind, placebo-controlled study, we treated 102 patients with ACL using either a combination of a single-strain Leishmania amazonensis killed promastigote vaccine plus a half dose of meglumine antimoniate, or placebo plus the same half dose regimen of meglumine antimoniate, in 10-day series followed by 10-day intervals.ResultsOf the 47 patients in the experimental arm, 47 (100%) were cured after four series of treatment, compared to four of 49 (8.2%) in the control group (P < 0.0001). Six patients were lost to follow-up.ConclusionsThe combination of a single-strain Leishmania (Leishmania) amazonensis killed promastigote vaccine with a half dose regimen of antimonial is highly effective for the treatment of ACL.

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