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Sarah P. Georgiadou, Konstantinos P. Makaritsis and George N. Dalekos

Abstract

Leishmaniasis is a vector-borne disease caused by protozoan parasites of the genus Leishmania. It is transmitted by phlebotomine female sand flies of the genera Phlebotomus and Lutzomyia in the old and new world, respectively. More than 20 well-recognized Leishmania species are known to infect humans and cause visceral (VL), cutaneous (CL) and mucocutaneous (ML) forms of the disease. Approximately 350 million people are at risk of contracting the disease and an estimated 1.6 million new cases occur annually. The disease mainly affects poor people in Africa, Asia and Latin America, and is associated with malnutrition, population migration, poor residency conditions, frail immune system and lack of resources. Previously, diagnosis of leishmaniasis relied mainly on invasive techniques of detecting parasites in splenic and bone marrow aspirates. Nevertheless, serological tests using the recombinant kinesin antigen (rK39) and molecular methods (polymerase chain reaction) are considered the best options for diagnosis today, despite problems related to varying sensitivities and specificities and field adaptability. Therapy of leishmaniasis ranges from local treatment of cutaneous lesions to systemic often toxic, therapy for disseminated CL, ML and VL. Agents with efficacy against leishmaniasis include amphotericin B, pentavalent antimonial drugs, paromomycin and miltefosine. No single therapy of VL currently offers satisfactory efficacy along with safety. This article provides a brief and updated systematic review on the epidemiology, diagnosis and treatment of this neglected disease.

Open access

Ioannis Zachos, Kalliopi Zachou, George N. Dalekos and Vasileios Tzortzis

Abstract

Liver cirrhosis is a major risk factor for increased mortality and morbidity in patients undergoing non-hepatic surgery with overall mortality rates as high as 45–50%. However, cirrhotic patients are often in need of surgical procedures including urological surgeries like cystectomies for muscle invasive bladder cancer. Data on the prognosis of these patients undergoing cystectomy for bladder cancer are scarce in the literature. In the present case-study, we describe the outcomes of 3 patients with liver cirrhosis who underwent radical cystectomy for muscle invasive bladder cancer. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study reporting on this kind of urological surgery in patients with liver cirrhosis. Accordingly, we provide a review in the literature on prognosis and factors influencing the survival of cirrhotic patients who undergo surgical procedures.