COMPARATIVE STUDY
JOURNAL ARTICLE
RESEARCH SUPPORT, NON-U.S. GOV'T
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Mycobacterium ulcerans infection (Buruli ulcer) on the face: a comparative analysis of 13 clinically suspected cases from the Democratic Republic of Congo.

We report our experience in managing 13 consecutive clinically suspected cases of Buruli ulcer on the face treated at the hospital of the Institut Médical Evangélique at Kimpese, Democratic Republic of Congo diagnosed during 2003-2007. During specific antibiotherapy, facial edema diminished, thus minimizing the subsequent extent of surgery and severe disfigurations. The following complications were observed: 1) lagophthalmos from scarring in four patients and associated ectropion in three of them; 2) blindness in one eye in one patient; 3) disfiguring exposure of teeth and gums resulting from excision of the left labial commissure that affected speech, drinking, and eating in one patient; and 4) dissemination of Mycobacterium ulcerans infection in three patients. Our study highlights the importance of this clinical presentation of Buruli ulcer, and the need for health workers in disease-endemic areas to be aware of the special challenges management of Buruli ulcer on the face presents.

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