✔️ WHO recently added Noma, to its official list of neglected tropical diseases (NTD).
✔️ Also known as cancrum oris or gangrenous stomatitis, it is a severe gangrenous disease of the mouth and face with a mortality rate of approximately 90%.
✔️ Also associated with extreme poverty, malnutrition and poor access to sanitation and oral hygiene.
✔️ Noma mainly affects children aged 2-6 years old and is found most commonly among those living in poor communities.
✔️ Noma disease is not contagious, it prefers to attack when the body’s defences are weak.
✔️ The disease begins with gum inflammation and is thought to be caused by bacteria found in the mouth.
✔️ The disease is also called the ‘face of poverty’, as effective drugs like sulfonamides and penicillin and adequate surgical treatment for the effects remain inaccessible for many due to extreme poverty.