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Concept: Measles

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CDC has developed interim guidelines for health care providers in the United States caring for pregnant women during a Zika virus outbreak. These guidelines include recommendations for pregnant women considering travel to an area with Zika virus transmission and recommendations for screening, testing, and management of pregnant returning travelers. Updates on areas with ongoing Zika virus transmission are available online (http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/notices/). Health care providers should ask all pregnant women about recent travel. Pregnant women with a history of travel to an area with Zika virus transmission and who report two or more symptoms consistent with Zika virus disease (acute onset of fever, maculopapular rash, arthralgia, or conjunctivitis) during or within 2 weeks of travel, or who have ultrasound findings of fetal microcephaly or intracranial calcifications, should be tested for Zika virus infection in consultation with their state or local health department. Testing is not indicated for women without a travel history to an area with Zika virus transmission. In pregnant women with laboratory evidence of Zika virus infection, serial ultrasound examination should be considered to monitor fetal growth and anatomy and referral to a maternal-fetal medicine or infectious disease specialist with expertise in pregnancy management is recommended. There is no specific antiviral treatment for Zika virus; supportive care is recommended.

Concepts: Health care, Medicine, Pregnancy, Epidemiology, Disease, Infectious disease, Infection, Measles

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Peter Hotez reflects on declining vaccination rates in Texas and the potential for future measles epidemics.

Concepts: Infectious disease, Vaccine, Measles

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The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) recommends that adolescents routinely receive tetanus, diphtheria, and acellular pertussis vaccine (Tdap), meningococcal conjugate vaccine (MenACWY), and human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine (1) at age 11-12 years. ACIP also recommends catch-up vaccination with hepatitis B vaccine, measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) vaccine, and varicella vaccine for adolescents who are not up to date with childhood vaccinations. ACIP recommends a booster dose of MenACWY at age 16 years (1). In December 2016, ACIP updated HPV vaccine recommendations to include a 2-dose schedule for immunocompetent adolescents initiating the vaccination series before their 15th birthday (2). To estimate adolescent vaccination coverage in the United States, CDC analyzed data from the 2016 National Immunization Survey-Teen (NIS-Teen) for 20,475 adolescents aged 13-17 years.* During 2015-2016, coverage increased for ≥1 dose of Tdap (from 86.4% to 88.0%) and for each HPV vaccine dose (from 56.1% to 60.4% for ≥1 dose). Among adolescents aged 17 years, coverage with ≥2 doses of MenACWY increased from 33.3% to 39.1%. In 2016, 43.4% of adolescents (49.5% of females; 37.5% of males) were up to date with the HPV vaccination series, applying the updated HPV vaccine recommendations retrospectively.(†) Coverage with ≥1 HPV vaccine dose varied by metropolitan statistical area (MSA) status and was lowest (50.4%) among adolescents living in non-MSA areas and highest (65.9%) among those living in MSA central cities.(§) Adolescent vaccination coverage continues to improve overall; however, substantial opportunities exist to further increase HPV-associated cancer prevention.

Concepts: Immune system, Human papillomavirus, HPV vaccine, Vaccine, Vaccination, Measles, Pertussis, Vaccines

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Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a complex neurodevelopmental disorder. Some anecdotal reports suggest that ASD is related to exposure to ethyl mercury, in the form of the vaccine preservative, thimerosal, and/or receiving the measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) vaccine. Using infant rhesus macaques receiving thimerosal-containing vaccines (TCVs) following the recommended pediatric vaccine schedules from the 1990s and 2008, we examined behavior, and neuropathology in three brain regions found to exhibit neuropathology in postmortem ASD brains. No neuronal cellular or protein changes in the cerebellum, hippocampus, or amygdala were observed in animals following the 1990s or 2008 vaccine schedules. Analysis of social behavior in juvenile animals indicated that there were no significant differences in negative behaviors between animals in the control and experimental groups. These data indicate that administration of TCVs and/or the MMR vaccine to rhesus macaques does not result in neuropathological abnormalities, or aberrant behaviors, like those observed in ASD.

Concepts: Brain, Vaccine, Autism, Pediatrics, MMR vaccine, Measles, Rubella, Mumps

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Zika virus is a mosquito-borne flavivirus primarily transmitted to humans by Aedes aegypti mosquitoes (1). Zika virus infections have also been documented through intrauterine transmission resulting in congenital infection; intrapartum transmission from a viremic mother to her newborn; sexual transmission; blood transfusion; and laboratory exposure (1-5). Most Zika virus infections are asymptomatic (1,6). Clinical illness, when it occurs, is generally mild and characterized by acute onset of fever, maculopapular rash, arthralgia, or nonpurulent conjunctivitis. However, Zika virus infection during pregnancy can cause adverse outcomes such as fetal loss, and microcephaly and other serious brain anomalies (1-3). Guillain-Barré syndrome, a rare autoimmune condition affecting the peripheral nervous system, also has been associated with Zika virus infection (1). Following the identification of local transmission of Zika virus in Brazil in May 2015, the virus has continued to spread throughout the Region of the Americas, and travel-associated cases have increased (7). In 2016, Zika virus disease and congenital infections became nationally notifiable conditions in the United States (8). As of September 3, 2016, a total of 2,382 confirmed and probable cases of Zika virus disease with symptom onset during January 1-July 31, 2016, had been reported from 48 of 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. Most cases (2,354; 99%) were travel-associated, with either direct travel or an epidemiologic link to a traveler to a Zika virus-affected area. Twenty-eight (1%) cases were reported as locally acquired, including 26 associated with mosquito-borne transmission, one acquired in a laboratory, and one with an unknown mode of transmission. Zika virus disease should be considered in patients with compatible clinical signs or symptoms who traveled to or reside in areas with ongoing Zika virus transmission or who had unprotected sex with someone who traveled to those areas. Health care providers should continue to educate patients, especially pregnant women, about the importance of avoiding infection with Zika virus, and all pregnant women should be assessed for possible Zika virus exposure at each prenatal visit (2).

Concepts: AIDS, Pregnancy, Disease, Uterus, Infection, United States, U.S. state, Measles

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Sustained high coverage with recommended vaccinations among children has kept many vaccine-preventable diseases at low levels in the United States (1). To assess coverage with vaccinations recommended for children by age 2 years in the United States (2), CDC analyzed data collected by the 2015 National Immunization Survey (NIS) for children aged 19-35 months (born January 2012-May 2014). Overall, coverage did not change during 2014-2015. Coverage in 2015 was highest for ≥3 doses of poliovirus vaccine (93.7%), ≥3 doses of hepatitis B vaccine (HepB) (92.6%), ≥1 dose of measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine (MMR) (91.9%), and ≥1 dose of varicella vaccine (91.8%). The data were also examined for potential vaccination coverage differences by race/ethnicity, poverty status, and urbanicity. Although disparities were noted for each of these factors, the most striking differences were seen for poverty status. Children living below the federal poverty level* had lower coverage with most of the vaccinations assessed compared with children living at or above the poverty level; the largest disparities were for rotavirus vaccine (66.8% versus 76.8%), ≥4 doses of pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV) (78.9% versus 87.2%), the full series of Haemophilus influenzae type b vaccine (Hib) (78.1% versus 85.5%), and ≥4 doses of diphtheria, tetanus, and acellular pertussis vaccine (DTaP) (80.2% versus 87.1%). Although coverage was high in some groups, opportunities exist to continue to address disparities. Implementation of evidence-based interventions, including strategies to enhance access to vaccination services and systems strategies that can reduce missed opportunities, has the potential to increase vaccination coverage for children living below the poverty level and in rural areas (3).

Concepts: Pneumonia, Vaccine, Poverty in the United States, MMR vaccine, Measles, Haemophilus influenzae, Pertussis, Vaccines

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During July 2016-January 2017, two unrelated measles cases were identified in the Denver, Colorado area after patients traveled to countries with endemic measles transmission. Each case resulted in multiple exposures at health care facilities and public venues, and activated an immediate and complex response by local and state public health agencies, with activities led by the Tri-County Health Department (TCHD), which serves Adams, Arapahoe, and Douglas counties. To track the economic burden associated with investigating and responding to single measles cases, personnel hours and supply costs incurred during each investigation were tracked prospectively. No secondary cases of measles were identified in either investigation. Postexposure prophylaxis (PEP) was administered to 31 contacts involving the first case; no contacts of the second case were eligible for PEP because of a delay in diagnosing measles disease. Public health costs of disease investigation in the first and second case were estimated at $49,769 and $18,423, respectively. Single measles cases prompted coordinated public health action and were costly and resource-intensive for local public health agencies.

Concepts: Health care, Health economics, Public health, Health insurance, Health, Epidemiology, Population health, Measles

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Nipah virus (NiV) is a paramyxovirus, and Pteropus spp. bats are the natural reservoir. From December 2010 through March 2014, hospital-based encephalitis surveillance in Bangladesh identified 18 clusters of NiV infection. The source of infection for case-patients in 3 clusters in 2 districts was unknown. A team of epidemiologists and anthropologists investigated these 3 clusters comprising 14 case-patients, 8 of whom died. Among the 14 case-patients, 8 drank fermented date palm sap (tari) regularly before their illness, and 6 provided care to a person infected with NiV. The process of preparing date palm trees for tari production was similar to the process of collecting date palm sap for fresh consumption. Bat excreta was reportedly found inside pots used to make tari. These findings suggest that drinking tari is a potential pathway of NiV transmission. Interventions that prevent bat access to date palm sap might prevent tari-associated NiV infection.

Concepts: Infection, Mammal, Primate, Bat, Henipavirus, Measles, Alcoholic beverage, Zoonosis

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Background Although measles was eliminated in the United States in 2000, importations of the virus continue to cause outbreaks. We describe the epidemiologic features of an outbreak of measles that originated from two unvaccinated Amish men in whom measles was incubating at the time of their return to the United States from the Philippines and explore the effect of public health responses on limiting the spread of measles. Methods We performed descriptive analyses of data on demographic characteristics, clinical and laboratory evaluations, and vaccination coverage. Results From March 24, 2014, through July 23, 2014, a total of 383 outbreak-related cases of measles were reported in nine counties in Ohio. The median age of case patients was 15 years (range, <1 to 53); a total of 178 of the case patients (46%) were female, and 340 (89%) were unvaccinated. Transmission took place primarily within households (68% of cases). The virus strain was genotype D9, which was circulating in the Philippines at the time of the reporting period. Measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccination coverage with at least a single dose was estimated to be 14% in affected Amish households and more than 88% in the general (non-Amish) Ohio community. Containment efforts included isolation of case patients, quarantine of susceptible persons, and administration of the MMR vaccine to more than 10,000 persons. The spread of measles was limited almost exclusively to the Amish community (accounting for 99% of case patients) and affected only approximately 1% of the estimated 32,630 Amish persons in the settlement. Conclusions The key epidemiologic features of a measles outbreak in the Amish community in Ohio were transmission primarily within households, the small proportion of Amish people affected, and the large number of people in the Amish community who sought vaccination. As a result of targeted containment efforts, and high baseline coverage in the general community, there was limited spread beyond the Amish community. (Funded by the Ohio Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.).

Concepts: Public health, Epidemiology, Virus, Vaccination, Measles, Amish, Mumps, MMR vaccine controversy

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On April 10, 2017, the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) was notified about a suspected measles case. The patient was a hospitalized child aged 25 months who was evaluated for fever and rash, with onset on April 8. The child had no history of receipt of measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine and no travel history or known exposure to measles. On April 11, MDH received a report of a second hospitalized, unvaccinated child, aged 34 months, with an acute febrile rash illness with onset on April 10. The second patient’s sibling, aged 19 months, who had also not received MMR vaccine, had similar symptoms, with rash onset on March 30. Real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (rRT-PCR) testing of nasopharyngeal swab or throat specimens performed at MDH confirmed measles in the first two patients on April 11, and in the third patient on April 13; subsequent genotyping identified genotype B3 virus in all three patients, who attended the same child care center. MDH instituted outbreak investigation and response activities in collaboration with local health departments, health care facilities, child care facilities, and schools in affected settings. Because the outbreak occurred in a community with low MMR vaccination coverage, measles spread rapidly, resulting in thousands of exposures in child care centers, schools, and health care facilities. By May 31, 2017, a total of 65 confirmed measles cases had been reported to MDH (Figure 1); transmission is ongoing.

Concepts: Health care, Health care provider, Epidemiology, Patient, Illness, MMR vaccine, Measles, Rubella