Leprosy Mapping as an Auxiliary Tool for Early Diagnosis of New Cases

The geographic distribution of leprosy is characterized by concentration of high detection rates in specific areas (clusters or hotspots). These areas can be identified by case mapping followed by spatial epidemiological analysis. Leprosy mapping has been used to increase the efficiency and improve the cost-effectiveness of new case-detection approaches through targeted, active case-finding protocols. Beside early diagnosis, spatial analysis tools can also help to monitor the extent of multidrug therapy (MDT) coverage and could play a major role in vaccine-efficacy or chemoprophylaxis trials.