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High Rates of Pneumonia in Children under Two Years of Age in a South East Asian Refugee Population

Turner, C; Turner, P; Carrara, V; Burgoine, K; Htoo, STL; Watthanaworawit, W; Day, NP; ... Nosten, F; + view all (2013) High Rates of Pneumonia in Children under Two Years of Age in a South East Asian Refugee Population. PLOS ONE , 8 (1) , Article e54026. 10.1371/journal.pone.0054026. Green open access

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Abstract

Background There are an estimated 150 million episodes of childhood pneumonia per year, with 11–20 million hospital admissions and 1.575 million deaths. Refugee children are particularly vulnerable, with poorly defined pneumonia epidemiology. Methods We followed a birth cohort of 955 refugee infants, born over a one-year period, until two years of age. Clinical and radiographic pneumonia were diagnosed according to WHO criteria. Detailed characteristics were collected to determine risk factors for clinical, radiological and multiple episodes of pneumonia. Investigations were taken during a pneumonia episode to help determine or to infer an aetiological diagnosis. Findings The incidence of clinical pneumonia was 0.73 (95% CI 0.70–0.75) episodes per child year (/CY) and of radiological primary endpoint pneumonia (PEP) was 0.22/CY (95% CI 0.20–0.24). The incidence of pneumonia without severe signs was 0.50/CY (95% CI 0.48–0.53), severe pneumonia 0.15/CY (95% CI 0.13–0.17) and very severe pneumonia 0.06/CY (0.05–0.07). Virus was detected, from a nasopharyngeal aspirate, in 61.3% of episodes. A reduced volume of living space per person (IRR 0.99, 95% CI 0.99–1.0, p = 0.003) and young maternal age (IRR 1.59, 95% CI 1.12–2.27, p = 0.01) were risk factors for developing pneumonia. The risk of a child having >1 episode of pneumonia was increased by having a shorter distance to the next house (IRR 0.86, 95% CI 0.74–1.00, p = 0.04). Infants were at risk of having an episode of PEP if there was a shorter distance from stove to bed (IRR 0.89, 95% CI 0.80–0.99, p = 0.03). Raised CRP and neutrophil values were associated with PEP. Conclusions There was a high incidence of pneumonia in young children in this SE Asian refugee population. Viral infections were important, however CXR and non-specific marker findings suggested that bacteria may be involved in up to a third of cases.

Type: Article
Title: High Rates of Pneumonia in Children under Two Years of Age in a South East Asian Refugee Population
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0054026
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0054026
Language: English
Additional information: © 2013 Turner et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health > Infection, Immunity and Inflammation Dept
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1397647
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