My Republica, 22 July 2018
A total of 79 new patients of leprosy have been found in Siraha district, according to the Health Division at Dhangadhimai Municipality.
The new patients were identified during a door-to-door campaign launched by the government to identify the leprosy patients and offer them medical assistance towards making Nepal leprosy-free by 2020.
Among the newly diagnosed patients- 43 were male and 36 female, shared Health Division's Public Health officer, Bilat Narayan Raya.
The Health Division officials identified them at Phulkatahikatti, Hanumannagar, Bhawanipur and Nayanpur having symptoms of leprosy as swollen face, skin lesion, rashes and red marks among others.
According to Raya, leprosy, caused by the Mycobacterium Leprae, could be cured if medication is availed to the patients timely. Severe leprosy could lead to the nerve damage resulting in muscle atrophy, paralysis and blindness.
Jhapa records the highest number of leprosy patients while Morang the second, Sunsari the third, Siraha the fourth and Saptari the fifth in terms of highest number of leprosy patients nationwide, according to the Nepal Leprosy Trust, Lahan.
The local health service centres have been offering free treatment to the leprosy patients. Due to the lack of awareness and superstitions, many leprosy patients could be still in hide, opined Ray, stressing on the need to intensify awareness drives towards this curable diseases.