Summary Delay in reporting for possible leprosy diagnosis and a delay in making the diagnosis of leprosy may result in unnecessary complications. Objective: Which factors contribute to late reporting and a missed diagnosis of leprosy? Method: A questionnaire, involving 1243 newly diagnosed patients, was used to explore reasons for possible delay in diagnosis and start of treatment; the patients were being managed in six projects in four leprosy endemic countries, and needed treatment for nerve function impairment, Results/Conclusions: Delays in reporting for diagnosis and in establishing the diagnosis are multifactorial and differ between the research sites. Factors contributing to the delay are person and program related, including concealment of suspected disease, perhpas because of shame,accessibility of the clinic, and expertise within the diagnostic services. They need to be addressed in different ways to minimize delay thereby reducing risks for complications.
- Delay in diagnosis