A Sneak Peek about Leprosy
Leprosy is a chrinic bacterial infection that is progressive if left untreated. Leprosy affects the skin mainly, stating with uneven flat leasions. The disease also affects the peripheral nerves in the hands and feet.Even the mucus membranes are affected, which are the small opened areas in the body like the eyes, nose, and throat. The diease can spread from one person to another my droplets ( coughing, sneezing). It may affect anyone there is no age limit nor a specific population.
Leprosy starts off with small lesions on the skin. The lesions become numb because of the loss of sensation in them, due to the distruction of nerve endings. Mutations occur to the fingers and toes because of the loss of sensation , that my cause them to fall off.
A person with Leprosy disease, can be recognized by their appearances sometimes. As the disease causes very obvious deformities. Some of the signs and symptoms that can be easily noted are the skin lesions previously mentioned. Lesions have uneven edges, spreads all over the body, and the color is faded and lighter than the normal skin. The areas with these lesions will have loss of sensations and numbness. There will be extra growth of skin, that protrudes out. The protrusions of skin is dry, thick, and stiff. Patients may experience severe pain and muscle weakness, or ever paralysis. Blindness could also be cause by leprosy. Other signs and symptoms are nosebleeds, stuffy nose, feet ulcers.
Leprosy can be diagnosed by a skin smear. The disease can be cured and treated if medications are started fast. The treatment of leprosy consist of three antibiotics that are prescribed together. The duration of the treatment may last up to 12 months. Fortunately, the WHO took a great step to reduce the spread of the disease, and made the treatment available for everyone everywhere.
Some nursing considerations for leprosy :
- Care of skin integrity.
- Management of pain.
- Self care deficit.
- Importance of personal hygiene.
- Impaired self-esteem
- Disturbed sleep patern.
Leprosy. An update: definition, phathogeniss,classification, diagnosis, treatmeant | Actas Dermo sifiliogoráficas (English edition)
International Federation of antileprosy associations,2001, How to Diagnose and treat leprosy
NADA: nursing care plan for diseases of integumentry