Utilising Medical Illustration to Improve Understanding and Communication of Pathogenesis of Rare Disease Systems

Ulcers are common in the tropics, including West Africa where other (much rarer) infectious diseases causing ulceration may occur. It is vital that health workers in these resource-poor settings have good tools to discriminate tropical ulcers from those which require referral and specialist treatment. Such diseases include Buruli ulcer, Leishmaniasis, and Yaws. Currently, training of these individuals (who are often community members) involves the use of photographs of examples of ulcers. One disadvantage of this approach is that people using them tend to try to pair up the clinical lesions with the photo rather than using them to think through the diagnosis. In this project we will examine whether medical illustrations or drawings of ‘typical’ ulcers will offer improved rates of correct diagnosis..

NTD Hub Members

Dr Rachel Simmonds


University of Surrey (Guildford, UK)

Kumasi Centre for Collaborative Research (Kumasi, Ghana)