Ashwini Kodigehalli Chikkanna Swamy, Anjan Kumar Patra
Abstract: Diagnosis of paucibacillary leprosy is challenging. There are not many studies corroborating the sensitivity of Auramine Rhodamine staining. Hence this study was done to assess the efficacy of Auramine Rhodamine staining in detecting lepra bacilli in comparison to Ziehl Neelsen staining in paucibacillary leprosy cases. Slit skin smears was taken from 4 sites such as ear lobe, eyebrows, from the lesion, buttocks, and a total of 4 smears from the above sites were prepared on two different slides. One slide was stained with Ziehl Neelsen stain and another was stained with Auramine Rhodamine stain. A total of 60 cases of paucibacillary leprosy were included in this study with maximum number of patients in the age group of 21-40years (46.66%) with male preponderance. Auramine Rhodamine staining was able to detect 42 cases (70%) out of 60 cases and Ziehl Neelsen staining was able to detect 22 cases (36.66%) out of 60 paucibacillary leprosy cases. Auramine Rhodamine staining using fluorescent microscopy is more sensitive than Ziehl Neelsen staining using light microscopy. Hence, it is recommended to be used as supplementary tool to confirm clinically diagnosed cases of paucibacillary leprosy in hospitals where facility for fluorescent microscopy is available.
Keywords: Paucibacillary leprosy, Ziehl Neelsen staining, Auramine Rhodamine staining, Slit skin smear