Cutaneous leishmaniasis is endemic in Israel. Leishmania major is the most prevalent species that cause cutaneous leishmaniasis. Current treatment options are limited and there are few investigations in search of alternative ones.
This study aims to assess our experience with intralesional sodium stibogluconate (SSG) in the treatment of cutaneous leishmaniasis.
A retrospective evaluation for all adult cases of cutaneous leishmaniasis treated by intralesional and intravenous SSG (Pentostam, GlaxoSmithKline) between 2004 and 2006 was performed, for cases referred to a tertiary care university-affiliated medical centre in Israel. Intralesional SSG was injected at 0.5 mL per lesion (50 mg). Treatment was repeated every 2-3 weeks for a total of 12 weeks. Intravenous SSG was administered at a dose of 20 mg/kg for 10-20 days.
Thirty-three cases of cutaneous leishmaniasis were treated with intralesional SSG during the study period. The patients consist of 26 males and 7 females, mostly Israeli military personnel, and there were a total of 93 lesions. Within 3 months from treatment onset, 91% (30/33) had completed healing of the cutaneous lesions after an average of 3 treatments (range 1-6). Side-effects were mild and were mostly pain during injection, with two patients developing mild local site reaction after the injection.
Intralesional SSG treatment is safe, effective and well tolerated with minimal side-effects.