Chinese Medicine, 2011, 2, 43-46
doi:10.4236/cm.2011.22008 Published Online June 2011 (htt p:// l/cm)
Copyright © 2011 SciRes. CM
A Case History of Treatment of
Cutaneous Leishmaniasis by Chromotherapy
Samina T. Yousuf Azeemi1*, Masoom Yasinzai2, Syed Mohsin Raza1
1Department of Physics, University of Balo chis tan, Quetta, Pakistan
2Quaid-e-Azam University, Islamabad, Pakistan
Received January 29, 2011; revised March 8, 2011; accepted April 6, 2011
Cutaneous Lei shmaniasis is endemic in man y parts of the world. The disease in most of the cases appears in
the form of the open ulcerated lesion on exposed part of the body. The pentavalent antimonial injections
(20 mg/kg for 20 days) underneath the lesion for treatment are painful and most of the times unaffordable by
the patients, mostly effected by this disease. As a result, most patients give-up early resulting in resistance.
Due to high prevalence and the disease taking an epidemic form, there is a need to develop a new simple,
cheap and yet an effective alternative treatment for cutaneous Leishmaniasis. Reported here is a case study
aimed at alternative treatment regimen for cutaneous leishmaniasis. Here we present a case history of cuta-
neous leish maniasis treated wi th chromotherapy . This seems to be an effective an d new method o f treatment
only using visible range radiations of different wavelengths with no apparent side-effects. Six months follo w
up was observed and no recurrence was found.
Keywords: Cutaneous Leshmaniasis, Chromotherapy, Photostimulation
1. Introduction
Leishmania comprises a genus of flagellate protozoan
parasites with a worldwide distribution and with more
than 20 species that are pathogenic in humans. This pa-
rasitic disease is transmitted by the bite of the infected
female phlebotomine sandflies. The trypanosomatid pa-
rasite of the genus leishmania is the etiological agent in a
variety of disease manifestations, collectively known as
Leishmaniasis [1].
1.1. Geography and Epidemiology
Leishmaniasis is prevalent throughout the tropical and
sub-tropical regions of Africa, Asia, the Mediterranean,
South Europe (old world) and South and Central America
(new world). Despite enormous efforts; it has proved dif-
ficult to predict the exact scale of impact of leishmaniasis
on public health, since many cases go unreported or mis-
diagnosed. It is estimated that approximately 12 million
people are currently infected and further 367 million are at
risk of acquiring Leishmaniasis in 88 countries, 72 of
which are developing countries and 13 of them are among
the least developed in the world. Approximately 350
million people live in these areas. The settings in which
leishmaniasis is found range from rainforests in Central
and South Am eric a to de se rts in West Asi a [2].
1.2. Signs and Symptoms
There are four main forms of leishmaniasis: 1) Visceral
leishmanias is; 2) Cutaneous leishmaniasis; 3) Diffuse
cutaneous leishmaniasis; 4) Mucoc uta neous le is hmania sis.
Cutaneous leishmaniasis-the most common form
which causes numerous sores on the body, which heal
within a few months leaving unpleasant looking scars.
The cutaneous form of the disease is one of the most
important causes of chronic ulcerative skin lesions. The
causative agent here in urban areas of Balochistan, Pa-
kistan is L.tropica. L.Tropica infections prevalent in the
urban areas produce lesions which persist for a year or
longer that is why they are called locally as “Kaldana”,
meaning a lesion which takes one year to heal.
1.3. Conventional Treatment
There are two common drugs meglumine antimoniate
(Glucantim®) and sodium stibogluconate (Pentostam®),
Copyright © 2011 SciRes. CM
but is painful and expensive too. It is not completely
understood how these drugs act against the parasite; they
may disrupt its energy production or trypanothione
1.4. Life cycle
Stage Description
1 Sandflies injects promastigotes, during blood meals.
2 Promastigotes are phagocytized by macrophages.
Promastigotes transform into amastigotes inside
4 Amastigotes multiply in infected cells and af fect dif ferent
5 Ingests macrophages infected with amastigotes.
6 Ingestion of parasitsed cell.
7 Amastigotes differentiate into promastigotes.
8 Promastigotes multipy and migrate to the proboscis.
2. Patient’s Cas e Histo r y
A male patient of 10 years age reported with an open
ulcerated facial lesion of 2.5 cm × 2.2 cm (Figure 1) to
the Dermatology department BMC complex Quetta (Pa-
kistan). The patient had developed the lesion within 40 to
50 days, which initially appeared as a small nodule. After
diagnoses of cutaneous leishmaniasis he was offered the
conventional allopathic treatment of leishmaniasis, i.e.,
antimonial injections (20 mg/kg for 20 days) and chro-
motherapy as an alternative treatment. The patient agreed
to take chromotherapy due to high cost of injections. The
therapy was started when the lesion had fully developed.
The patient did not receive any other treatment for the
lesion before this treatment (chromotherapy). The patient
belongs to the urban area of Balochistan, Pakistan wh ere
L.Tropica is the causative agent of leishmania. L.tropica
infections prevalent in the urban areas produce lesions
which persist for a year or longer that is why they are
called locally as “Kaldana”, meaning a lesion which
takes one year to heal [3].
3. Materials and Methods
The lesion was checked for parasites and found positive
in Giemsa stained smear. F.N.A.C [3] was obtained, and
cultured in P-Y culture media [4]. No secondary infec-
tions were observed. The lesion was irradiated with mo-
nochromatic light (wavelengths in visible region) for 30
days. The infected area was covered with coloured cel-
lophane filter sheets of particular dominant wavelengths
as given in Table 1, and irradiated with 60 watt incan-
descent bulb light from the distance of 0.80 m for 30
minutes daily. The lesion was treated with green colour
(538 nm) for 10 days, blue colour (483.5 nm) for 5
Figure 1. Lesion of cutaneous Leishmaniasis before treat-
Table 1. List of Dominant Wavelengths.
Color Dominant
(nm) Hue Purity
% Transmission
1 Violet 400 Violet 49% 18%
2 Blue 453.5 Blue green 52% 52%
3 Purple 464 Violet 36% 32%
4 G reen 538
15% 37%
5 Yel-
low 590 Reddish
Yellow 40% 82%
610 Orange 43% 47%
7 Red 644 Red 41% 51%
days and red colour (644 nm) for 15 days. The tempera-
ture was als o me asure d to ta ke int o account t he hea t effect.
4. Results
Fr om the very first day of treatment, the watery blackish
brown discharge was seen that lasted for a week. The
crust of the wound peeled off rapidly (Figure 2). After
this initial improvement the green colour stopped res-
ponding and no signs of improvement were visible for
4-5 days. The patient complained of pain in the sur-
rounding area of the lesion. The blue colour was then
used for 5 days to relieve pain. After relief from pain, red
color radiations actually started to heal up the lesion and
completely eradicated the visible symptom of the disease
(Figure 3). The light intensity was 107 lux at this dis-
tance. The F.N.A.C was again taken and cultured for
parasite which was found negative. After 30 days of
chromotherapy, the lesion was found ve for leishmania
both in Giemsa stained smears and the culture.
5. Discussions
Chromotherapy is scientifically referred to as a narrow
Copyright © 2011 SciRes. CM
Figure 2. After getting chromotherapy for seven days.
Figure 3. After 30 days of chromotherapy.
band in the cosmic electromagnetic energy spectrum,
known to mankind as the visible colour spectrum. It is
composed of reds, greens, blues and their combined de-
rivatives, producing the perceivable colours that fall be-
tween the ultraviolet and the infra-red ranges of energy
or vibrations. These visual colours with their unique w a-
velength and oscillations when combined with a light
source generate electrical impulses and magnetic cur-
rents or fields of energy that are prime activators of the
biochemical and hormonal processes [5]. The human
body, according to the doctrine of chromotherapy, is
basically composed of colors. The body comes into exis-
tence from colors, the body is stimulated by colors and
colors are responsible for the correct working of various
systems that function in the body. All organs and limbs
of the body have their own distinct color [6]. All organs,
cells and atoms exists as energy, an each form has its
frequency or vibrational energy. Each of our organ and
energy centres vibrates and harmonizes with the fre-
quencies of colours. When the various parts of the body
deviate from these expected normal vibrations, one can
assume that the body is either diseased or at least not
functioning properly. The vibratory rates inherent to
Chromotherapy are such that they balance diseased
energy pattern found in the body. For in every organ
there is an energetic level at which the organ best func-
tions. Any departure from that vibratory rate results in
pathology, whereas restoring the appropriate energy le-
vels to the physical organs results in a healed body [7].
There is substantial evidence in the literature on bios-
timulating action of low in tensity monochromatic visible
light and its role in photobiology and photomedicine
[8,9]. It was discovered that Monochromatic Single-
Wavelength Light Beams had an excellent therapeutic
effect on afflicted cell tissue. This occurs through a
process called “Photo-Stimulation”. A single Light Wave
is essential, because the cell tissue will not respond, if
more than one wavelength is present. From a nutritional
point of view a lack of sunlight can cause deficiencies.
Without sunlight vitamin D can no t be metabolized in the
human body, which can result in rickets. Most enzymes
need light for proper functioning. Studies have shown
that different wavelenghts affect different enzymatic
reactions. The Monochromatic Light influences the DNA
to use the lipoprotein in the area, so the cell has better
function, as well as to produce collagen and elastin [10].
Previously cell cultures have shown that visible light
penetrates into soft tissue and increases the action of
adenosine triphosphate (ATP), when it is transmitted
through the skin layers (the dermis, epidermis and the
subcutaneous tissue). The biostimulation and therapeutic
effects of low-power laser radiation of different wave-
lengths and light doses are well known, but the exact
mechanism of action of the laser radiation with living
cells is not yet und er s tood [12].
Quantitiave studies of low power monochromatic
visib le las er ligh t on va rious cells ( E.Col i, yeas ts, He La)
were performed to find irradiation conditions conducive
to vital activity stimulation [13]. Although Low Level
Laser Therapy (LLLT) has been used previously in
most studies, coherence is not important when photobi-
ologi cal effects a re expected b ecause both c oherent and
non- coh erent li ght h ave be en sho wn to be e ffec tive [8 ].
Theoretically chromotherapy suggests colors/ vibrations
for different parts/organs of the body, this field of study
still lacks scientific research and therefore no empirical
data is available regarding inter and intra cellular ef-
fects of specific wavelengths/vibrations on particular
We preferred chromotherapy due to its simplicity, co st
effectiveness as it requires no special equipment or me-
dicines, just a colour cellophane filter sheets and incan-
descent light. We started treatment with green colour
wavelength, which is normally used for wounds and ulc-
ers. Green colour is known as an antiseptic, germicidal
and disinfectant, as it eliminates microorganisms and
prevents decay [5]. According to the theory of chromo-
Copyright © 2011 SciRes. CM
therapy, blue increases the elimination of the toxins
through perspiration and relieves the irritation/pain from
burns and itching. Red colour worked well in eliminating
the parasite after 15 days of therapy. In this case it can
not be attributed to effect of heat as previously [14-16]
reported. The rise in temperature on the skin was only
1˚C which is negligible. Also, at this distance the heat
produce d wa s a pproximately equa l to 1 joule s /˚C.
This is a preliminary repo rt of an original idea of pub-
lic health interest tested on a single patient; a more con-
trolled clinical trial is needed to authenticate the treat-
ment regimen. Treatment with prevalent antimonials is
not only expensive, it is painful too. Although 30 mi-
nutes for 30 days duration is hard to comply with but
having advantages of no pain and almost no cost is a
good enough incentive for patients to stay with this
treatment regimen.
6. Conclusions
The treatment is safe, with no apparent side effects.
It is v ery ch eap as compared to the treatment given to
the patient in form of injections of glucantine or am-
photericine B.
It has proved to be very easily manageable by the
patient , wi th no probl e ms during the treatment.
Green and red colour therapy may be used as the al-
ternative treatment for curing the ulcers of cutaneous
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