Influenza burden in children newborn to eleven months of age in a pediatric emergency department during the peak of an influenza epidemic. Article - 2003

D. Ploin, S. Liberas, D. Thouvenot, A. Fouilhoux, Y. Gillet, A. Denis, F. Chapuis, B. Lina, D. Floret

D. Ploin, S. Liberas, D. Thouvenot, A. Fouilhoux, Y. Gillet, A. Denis, F. Chapuis, B. Lina, D. Floret, « Influenza burden in children newborn to eleven months of age in a pediatric emergency department during the peak of an influenza epidemic.  », Pediatr Infect Dis J, 2003, p. 222

Abstract

BACKGROUND : The aim of this study was to determine the burden of influenza-related diseases in children 0 to 11 months of age during the peak of the 2001 to 2002 influenza epidemic. METHODS : This was a prospective study at the Pediatric Emergency Department of Edouard Herriot tertiary teaching hospital in Lyon, France. The study included 304 infants 0 to 11 months of age. Consecutive patients were systematically enrolled during the 4 weeks of the influenza epidemic peak (Weeks 3 to 6, 2002). Influenza viruses were detected by antigen detection and virus culture from nasal swabs. Structured telephone interviews were conducted on Days 8 and 15 after virus detection. There was also a 6-month survey into the medicoadministrative database to detect late complications that required delayed hospitalization of influenza-positive children. RESULTS : Influenza virus was detected in 99 (33%) of 304 patients (A/H3N2 in 30% and B in 3%). Nonrespiratory symptoms were the dominant clinical manifestations in 30% of influenza-positive children. One child with influenza presented with febrile seizures. Twenty (20%) children with influenza were hospitalized. Parents reported recovery from the illness in 63 and 94% of children on Days 8 and 15, respectively. The median length of an influenza episode was 8 days. CONCLUSIONS : Our results confirm the high prevalence of influenza-related morbidity in infants during the epidemic peak. One child in three consulting to the pediatric emergency room had a virologically confirmed influenza infection regardless of the body temperature. Every fifth child with influenza was admitted to hospital, which corresponds to an admission rate of 237 per 100 000 children 0 to 11 months of age.

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