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Swine origin influenza A H1N1 viral infection in pediatric patients at tertiary-care hospital, Ahmedabad

Khyati Prajapati, Mahendra M. Vegad, Neeta A Khandelwal, Sumeeta Soni, Nidhima Agarawal.


Background: In April 2009, influenza A H1N1 of swine origin was first documented in the border areas of Mexico and United States. Influenza viruses are known to cause frequent epidemics and periodic pandemics; therefore, it has been major public health problem.

Objective: To study the swine-origin influenza A H1N1 in pediatric patients attending civil hospital, Ahmedabad, by real-time reverse transcription–polymerase chain reaction (rRT-PCR).

Materials and Methods: A retrospective observational study was conducted at a tertiary-care hospital, Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India, from January to March 2015. Totally, 484 samples of pediatrics patients with suspected cases of influenza A H1N1 were received and tested by rRT-PCR.

Result: During January to March 2015, a total of 484 samples of pediatric patients were received for H1N1 influenza; 207 samples were positive for H1N1 influenza, of which 111 (23%) were of boys and 96 (20%) of girls. Neonates accounted for 19% cases; infants for 20%; and preschool age children for 25%; 19% were aged between 5 and 10 years and 17% between 11 and 18 years. Among these patients, the mortality was 10%.

Conclusion: Positivity rate of H1N1 influenza in our study was 43% for pediatric patients with peak incidence in winter in mid-February, which is a major public health problem. Regular observation is warranted for early identification of any antigenic variants to realize the seasonality and analyze the role of factors such as temperature, rainfall, and humidity in the spreading of influenza viruses.

Key words: H1N1 influenza A virus, real-time reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (rRT-PCR), tertiary-care hospital, pediatrics, fever

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