Group of protozoan diseases that infect humans and mammals, causing 2 major clinical syndromes: skin ulcers, and systemic illness affecting the reticuloendothelial system (spleen, liver, and bone marrow). The main route of transmission is via the bite of the phlebotomine sand fly.
Includes a range of clinical presentations: cutaneous or visceral leishmaniasis.
Possible treatments depend on clinical presentations, parasite species and strain, and the part of the world in which infection occurs.
Treatment is less effective and more toxic in immunocompromised than in immunocompetent people.
Phlebotomus papatasi sand fly
Image courtesy of CDC; F. Collins
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