MONITORING AND CHARACTERIZATION OF EMERGENT INFLUENZA A H1N1 2009 VIRUSES IN RABAT, MOROCCO DURING 2009 - 2010

Omar Mestoui, Sanaa Lemriss, Mohammed El Mzibri, Abdelkarim Filali-Maltouf, Saad El Kabaj

Abstract


Background. Immediately after the outbreak of novel influenza A (H1N1) in the United States of America and Mexico, World Health Organization declared a global pandemic (pH1N1). A global monitoring system was set up in Morocco to control the dissemination of the virus and its impact on the public health. This study aims to describe the epidemiological and clinical characteristics of influenza like illness (ILI) patients and confirmed pH1N1 cases diagnosed in the Research and Analysis Medical Laboratory (LRAM) between November 23rd 2009 and March 7th 2010. Methods. A total of 300 nasopharyngeal swabs from ILI patients were screened for seasonal influenza A and pH1N1 viruses by real-time RT-PCR. For each patient, clinical and epidemiological information were recorded. Results. pH1N1 was confirmed in 149 ILI patients (49.7%). This study showed a peak in week 50/2009. The mean age of pH1N1 cases was 13.4 years and children between 5 and 14 years are the most affected cases (82/149). The most common symptom was the cough reported in 83% of pH1N1 positive cases, followed by headache and asthenia. Among the 149 pH1N1 confirmed cases, 10 had asthma and all of them are children. Conclusion. During the pandemic period, pH1N1 was the predominant influenza A subtype. This study indicates that pH1N1 was widespread and the highest risk group is the children of school-going age (aged 5–14). These results can be used for future planning strategies for influenza and strengthening the influenza monitoring system for better management of the infection and limiting the development of complicated diseases.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.19044/esj.2014.v10n33p%25p


European Scientific Journal (ESJ)

 

ISSN: 1857 - 7881 (Print)
ISSN: 1857 - 7431 (Online)

 

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