10 Feb 2003

Call on leprosy sufferers in Samoa to seek treatment

12:54 pm on 10 February 2003

A hospital spokesman in Samoa says leprosy could be all by wiped out the in country if people would come forward for treatment.

Two new cases last year pushed the total to ten.

Dr Vaiouga Levi of Tupua Tamasese Meaole Hospital says sufferers may be staying at home instead of seeking treatment, allowing the disease to spread.

Dr Levi says some of those affected do not treat their condition seriously enough because they are not hospitalised.

He says often signs of the illness can be covered with clothing and the nature of the disease damages nerves meaning it does not hurt.