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Socio - Cultural Beliefs and Stigma Including Health Seeking Behaviour towards Leprosy - A Review

Asian Journal of Pharmaceutical and Health Sciences,2014,4,2,1024-1027.
Published:May 2014
Type:Review Articles
Authors:
Author(s) affiliations:

Sartaj Ahmad1,*, Rahul Bansal2, Pawan Parashr3, Monika Gupta4, Chhavi Kiran

1Assistant Professor, Medical Sociology, Department of Community Medicine, Subharti Medical College Swami Vivekananda Subharti University, Meerut, Uttar Pradesh, India.

2Professor and Head, Department of Community Medicine Subharti Medical College, Meerut, Uttar Pradesh, India.

3Professor, Department of Community Medicine Subharti Medical College, Meerut, Uttar Pradesh, India.

4Assistant Professor, Department of Community Medicine Subharti Medical College Meerut, Uttar Pradesh, India.

5Junior Resident, Department of Community Medicine Subharti Medical College Meerut, Uttar Pradesh, India.

Abstract:

Leprosy (Hansen's Disease) is a chronic infectious disease, caused by M. leprae. The word leper comes from a Greek word meaning scaly. It affects mainly the peripheral nerves and affects the skin, muscles, the eyes, the nose, bones, testes and internal organs. In some countries, a significant number of cases do not seek treatment or seek treatment late, partly due to socio-cultural beliefs and stigma about leprosy. The priority areas in the leprosy elimination programme are early case detection, case holding and consequently, the prevention of disabilities. So there is a nation-wide mass education is needed to educate people. This may include social assistance and social support to the patients, help to the needy individuals and families. Such information would help determine the areas of emphasis in an education programme to make people seek early diagnosis and undergo the prolonged treatment for cure.

Socio - cultural beliefs and stigma including Health seeking behaviour towards Leprosy - A review