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A case report of cutaneous leishmaniasis: a misleading clinical presentation



The diagnosis of cutaneous leishmaniasis (CL) is often difficult because of the diversity of clinical presentations, its often-misleading appearance and the very long incubation period (time between the endemic stay and the onset of skin lesions).


We report the case of an otherwise healthy 67-year-old man who presented with inflammatory skin lesions on the scalp and face for the past 7 years. The lesions were first mistaken as cutaneous sarcoidosis, mycobacterial infection, and cutaneous lymphoma. Finally, the diagnosis was made by RT-PCR analysis on a punch-biopsy specimen, which was positive for Leishmania infantum.

Discussion and conclusion

To date, the choice of treatment for complex cutaneous leishmaniases is based on the Leishmania species. Our patient successfully responded to liposomal amphotericin B.

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We thank Laurine Sacré, MD, for referral of the patient and the pathologists, Julie Lelotte, MD, Pascal Van Eeckout, MD, and Alessandra Camboni, MD, for their contributions to this case. We thank Mariana Andrade, MD, who provided editorial assistance. Compensation but no commercial funding was received for this purpose.

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Correspondence to Marie Baeck.

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Vanlier, C., Marot, L., Laranaga, E. et al. A case report of cutaneous leishmaniasis: a misleading clinical presentation. Infection 49, 177–180 (2021).

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  • Leishmaniasis
  • Skin
  • Leishmania infantum