Skip to content


A disease caused by any of a number of species of protozoa in the genus LEISHMANIA. There are four major clinical types of this infection: cutaneous (Old and New World) (LEISHMANIASIS, CUTANEOUS), diffuse cutaneous (LEISHMANIASIS, DIFFUSE CUTANEOUS), mucocutaneous (LEISHMANIASIS, MUCOCUTANEOUS), and visceral (LEISHMANIASIS, VISCERAL). Source: DECS/BIREME


Leishmaniasis is a vector-borne disease with a variety of parasite species, reservoirs, and vectors involved in the route of transmission. Leishmaniasis is caused by the protozoa Leishmania, which are spread by a variety of sand fly species. There are three different clinical manifestations of Leishmaniasis: cutaneous (skin), mucosal (mucus-membrane) and visceral (the most severe form, which affects internal organs). The presence of Leishmaniasis is directly linked to poverty, but social, environmental and climatologic factors directly influence the disease’s epidemiology. Leishmaniasis is classified as a Neglected Tropical Disease (NTD) and endemic in 98 countries and territories, with more than 350 million people at risk.

General information about this disease

Strategic Partners

[ Collaborating Centers Website ]

Regional Office for the Americas of the World Health Organization
525 Twenty-third Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20037, United States of America
Tel.: +1 (202) 974-3000 Fax: +1 (202) 974-3663

© Pan American Health Organization. All rights reserved.