: Hansen’s disease is a chronic infectious disease with a wide range of clinical manifestations. The clinical diagnosis must be confirmed by histopathological and bacteriological studies in order to adequately manage the condition and prevent drug resistance.
: To perform a clinico-histopathological correlation of skin lesions in all patients with a clinical suspicion of Hansen’s disease.
Materials and methods: A retrospective, hospital based, cross-sectional study was conducted in the Department of Pathology, Father Muller Medical College, Mangalore. Skin biopsies of all suspected cases of Hansen’s disease received over a period of three and a half years were included in the study. Haematoxylin and eosin, Fite‑Faraco stained sections of all cases were reviewed. The cases were classified according to Ridley–Jopling classification into TT, BT, BB, I, BL, and LL. Clinical details of the patient, including type and site of lesion were obtained from the patient’s medical records. Clinico‑histopathological correlation was done for all the cases. In addition, wherever available, the corresponding slit‑skin smears were also included.
Results: A total of 76 cases were clinically diagnosed as Hansen’s disease. Clinico- histopathological correlation was seen in 33/76 cases (43.42%). The most common histological subtype of Hansen’s was Borderline Tuberculoid (BT) - 24/76 cases (31.58%). Maximum agreement was seen in Mid-borderline leprosy (92.11%). Fite Faraco stain was positive in 21 out of 76 cases. Slit skin smears were available for 55 cases and positive in 20 cases.
Conclusion: Due to clinical and morphological overlap, it is imperative to correlate the clinical, histopathological and bacteriological index results in order to accurately subtype the categories in Hansen’s disease.