, Volume 69, Issue 17, pp 793-796

Visceral leishmaniasis in an HIV-infected patient: Clinical features and response to treatment

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We report the case of 43-year-old homosexual patient with HIV infection and a history of travel to the Far East in whom visceral leishmaniasis was the first infectious complication. Symptoms were fever, malaise, weight loss, hepatosplenomegaly, generalized lymphadenopathy, and oral thrush. Laboratory abnormalities included a slight elevation of liver enzymes, impairment of liver function tests, leukocytopenia, anemia, hypergammaglobulinemia, and markedly depressed CD4 + -cell counts. Despite initially successful treatment with pentavalent antimony, a relapse of leishmaniasis occurred after 7 months. Eradication of the infection was not achieved. Treatment was continued as a palliative chronic suppressive treatment with fortnightly pentamidine infusions. The clinical course was complicated by legionella pneumonia and the development of rapidly progressing Kaposi's sarcoma.

The case is presented in detail, and the influence of HIV infection on the course of leishmaniasis is discussed.