Mike English and J. Anthony G. Scott propose a framework for national surveillance, monitoring, and research that could help inform guideline development in low-income settings.
The 10-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV10) was introduced in Kenya in 2011. Introduction of any PCV will perturb the existing pneumococcal population structure, thus the aim was to genotype pneumococci collected in Kilifi before PCV10.
Methods and Findings
Using multilocus sequence typing (MLST), we genotyped >1100 invasive and carriage pneumococci from children, the largest collection genotyped from a single resource-poor country and reported to date. Serotype 1 was the most common serotype causing invasive disease and was rarely detected in carriage; all serotype 1 isolates were members of clonal complex (CC) 217. There were temporal fluctuations in the major circulating sequence types (STs); and although 1-3 major serotype 1, 14 or 23F STs co-circulated annually, the two major serotype 5 STs mainly circulated independently. Major STs/CCs also included isolates of serotypes 3, 12F, 18C and 19A and each shared ≤2 MLST alleles with STs that circulate widely elsewhere. Major CCs associated with non-PCV10 serotypes were predominantly represented by carriage isolates, although serotype 19A and 12F CCs were largely invasive and a serotype 10A CC was equally represented by invasive and carriage isolates.
Understanding the pre-PCV10 population genetic structure in Kilifi will allow for the detection of changes in prevalence of the circulating genotypes and evidence for capsular switching post-vaccine implementation.
In low-income countries, Surgical Site Infection (SSI) is a common form of hospital-acquired infection. Antibiotic prophylaxis is an effective method of preventing these infections, if given immediately before the start of surgery. Although several studies in Africa have compared pre-operative versus post-operative prophylaxis, there are no studies describing the implementation of policies to improve prescribing of surgical antibiotic prophylaxis in African hospitals.
We conducted SSI surveillance at a typical Government hospital in Kenya over a 16 month period between August 2010 and December 2011, using standard definitions of SSI and the extent of contamination of surgical wounds. As an intervention, we developed a hospital policy that advised pre-operative antibiotic prophylaxis and discouraged extended post-operative antibiotics use. We measured process, outcome and balancing effects of this intervention in using an interrupted time series design.
From a starting point of near-exclusive post-operative antibiotic use, after policy introduction in February 2011 there was rapid adoption of the use of pre-operative antibiotic prophylaxis (60% of operations at 1 week; 98% at 6 weeks) and a substantial decrease in the use of post-operative antibiotics (40% of operations at 1 week; 10% at 6 weeks) in Clean and Clean-Contaminated surgery. There was no immediate step-change in risk of SSI, but overall, there appeared to be a moderate reduction in the risk of superficial SSI across all levels of wound contamination. There were marked reductions in the costs associated with antibiotic use, the number of intravenous injections performed and nursing time spent administering these.
Implementation of a locally developed policy regarding surgical antibiotic prophylaxis is an achievable quality improvement target for hospitals in low-income countries, and can lead to substantial benefits for individual patients and the institution.
This study determined the serotype-specific acquisition rates for pneumococcal colonization in a cohort of 1404 newborn infants followed intensively for 3 months. By observing pneumococcal carriage in family members, we were able to determine serotype-specific transmission probabilities between relatives.
Background. Herd protection and serotype replacement disease following introduction of pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV) are attributable to the vaccine's impact on colonization. Prior to vaccine introduction in Kenya, we did an epidemiological study to estimate the rate of pneumococcal acquisition, by serotype, in an uncolonized population.
Methods. Nasopharyngeal swab specimens were taken from newborns aged ≤7 days and weekly thereafter for 13 weeks. Parents, and siblings aged <10 years, were swabbed at monthly intervals. Swabs were transported in skim milk-tryptone-glucose-glycerin and cultured on gentamicin blood agar. Pneumococci were serotyped by the Quellung reaction. We used survival analysis and Cox regression analysis to examine serotype-specific acquisition rates and risk factors and calculated transmission probabilities from the pattern of acquisitions within the family.
Results. Of 1404 infants recruited, 887 were colonized by 3 months of age, with the earliest acquisition detected on the first day of life. The median time to acquisition was 38.5 days. The pneumococcal acquisition rate was 0.0189 acquisitions/day (95% confidence interval, .0177–.0202 acquisitions/day). Serotype-specific acquisition rates varied from 0.00002–0.0025 acquisitions/day among 49 different serotypes. Season, coryza, and exposure to cigarettes, cooking fumes, and other children in the home were each significant risk factors for acquisition. The transmission probability per 30-day duration of contact with a carrier was 0.23 (95% CI, .20–.26).
Conclusions. Newborn infants in Kilifi have high rates of nasopharyngeal acquisition of pneumococci. Half of these acquisitions involve serotypes not included in any current vaccine. Several risk factors are modifiable through intervention. Newborns represent a consistent population of pneumococcus-naive individuals in which to estimate the impact of PCV on transmission.
Pneumonia is the leading cause of childhood mortality worldwide. The WHO recommends presumptive treatment based on clinical syndromes. Recent studies raise concerns over the frequency of treatment failure in Africa.
We applied a definition of treatment failure to data prospectively collected from children who were 2-59 months with severe, or very severe pneumonia admitted to Kilifi District Hospital, Kenya form May 2007 through May 2008 and treated using WHO guidelines. The primary outcome was treatment failure at 48 hours.
Of 568 children, median age 11 months, 165 (29%) had very severe pneumonia, 30 (5.3%) a positive HIV test and 62 (11%) severe malnutrition. 111 (20%, 95% CI 17-23%) children failed treatment at 48 hours and 34 (6.0%) died, 22 (65%) deaths occurred before 48 hours. Of 353 children with severe pneumonia, without HIV or severe malnutrition, 42 (12%) failed to respond at 48 hours, 15 (4.3%) failed at 5 days and one child (0.3%) died. Among 215 children with either severe pneumonia complicated by HIV or severe malnutrition, or very severe pneumonia, 69 (32%) failed to treatment at 48 hours, 47 (22%) failed at 5 days and 33 (16%) died. Treatment failure at 48 hours was associated with shock, bacteremia, very severe pneumonia, Sa02<95%, severe malnutrition, HIV, and age <1 year in multivariable models.
In this setting, few children with uncomplicated severe pneumonia fail treatment or die under current guidelines. Deaths mainly occurred early and may be reduced by improving prevention, pre-hospital care and treatment of sepsis.
Pneumonia; Treatment Failure; Kenya
There are more than 90 serotypes of Streptococcus pneumoniae, with varying biologic and epidemiologic properties. Animal studies suggest that carriage induces an acquired immune response that reduces duration of colonization in a non-serotype-specific fashion.
We studied pneumococcal nasopharyngeal carriage longitudinally in Kenyan children aged 3-59 months, following up positive swabs at days 2, 4, 8, 16, and 32, and then monthly thereafter until two swabs were negative for the original serotype. As previously reported, 1868/2840 (66%) of children swabbed at baseline were positive. We estimated acquisition, clearance and competition parameters for 27 serotypes using a Markov transition model .
Point estimates of type-specific acquisition rates ranged from 0.00025/day (type 1) to 0.0031/day (type 19F). Point estimates of time to clearance (inverse of type-specific immune clearance rate) ranged from 28 days (type 20) to 124 days (type 6A). For the serotype most resistant to competition (type 19F), acquisition of other serotypes was 52% less likely (95% confidence interval= 37%-63%) than in an uncolonized host. Fitness components (carriage duration, acquisition rate, lack of susceptibility to competition) were positively correlated with each other and with baseline prevalence, and were associated with biologic properties previously shown to associate with serotype. Duration of carriage declined with age for most serotypes.
Common S. pneumoniae serotypes appear superior in many dimensions of fitness. Differences in rate of immune clearance are attenuated as children age and become capable of more rapid clearance of the longest-lived serotypes. These findings provide information for comparison after introduction of pneumococcal conjugate vaccine.
The diagnosis of etiology in severe pneumonia remains a challenging area. Postmortem lung tissue potentially increases the sensitivity of investigations for identification of causative pathogens in fatal cases of pneumonia and can confirm antemortem microbiological diagnoses. Tissue sampling allows assessment of histological patterns of disease and ancillary immunohistochemical or molecular diagnostic techniques. It may also enhance the recognition of noninfectious conditions that clinically simulate acute pneumonia. Biobanking of lung tissue or postmortem culture isolates offers opportunities for new pathogen discovery and research into host-pathogen interactions. The Pneumonia Etiology Research for Child Health study proposes a percutaneous needle biopsy approach to obtain postmortem samples, rather than a full open autopsy. This has the advantage of greater acceptability to relatives, but risks greater sampling error. Both approaches may be susceptible to microbiological contamination or pathogen degradation. However, previous autopsy studies have confirmed the value of histological examination in revealing unsuspected pathogens and influencing clinical guidelines for the diagnosis and treatment of future pneumonia cases.
As a case-control study of etiology, the Pneumonia Etiology Research for Child Health (PERCH) project also provides an opportunity to assess the risk factors for severe pneumonia in hospitalized children at 7 sites. We identified relevant risk factors by literature review and iterative expert consultation. Decisions for inclusion in PERCH were based on comparability to published data, analytic plans, data collection costs and logistic feasibility, including interviewer time and subject fatigue. We aimed to standardize questions at all sites, but significant variation in the economic, cultural, and geographic characteristics of sites made it difficult to obtain this objective. Despite these challenges, the depth of the evaluation of multiple risk factors across the breadth of the PERCH sites should furnish new and valuable information about the major risk factors for childhood severe and very severe pneumonia, including risk factors for pneumonia caused by specific etiologies, in developing countries.
In most settings, sputum is not routinely collected for microbiological diagnosis from children with lower respiratory disease. To evaluate whether it is feasible and diagnostically useful to collect sputum in the Pneumonia Etiology Research for Child Health (PERCH) study, we reviewed the literature on induced sputum procedures. Protocols for induced sputum in children were collated from published reports and experts on respiratory disease and reviewed by an external advisory group for recommendation in the PERCH study. The advisory group compared 6 protocols: 4 followed a nebulization technique using hypertonic saline, and 2 followed a chest or abdomen massage technique. Grading systems for specimen quality were evaluated. Collecting sputum from children with lower respiratory tract illness is feasible and is performed around the world. An external advisory group recommended that sputum be collected from children hospitalized with severe and very severe pneumonia who participate in the PERCH study provided no contraindications exist. PERCH selected the nebulization technique using hypertonic saline.
Background. Pneumonia is the leading cause of childhood death in the developing world. Higher-quality etiological data are required to reduce this mortality burden.
Methods. We conducted a case-control study of pneumonia etiology among children aged 1–59 months in rural Kenya. Case patients were hospitalized with World Health Organization–defined severe pneumonia (SP) or very severe pneumonia (VSP); controls were outpatient children without pneumonia. We collected blood for culture, induced sputum for culture and multiplex polymerase chain reaction (PCR), and obtained oropharyngeal swab specimens for multiplex PCR from case patients, and serum for serology and nasopharyngeal swab specimens for multiplex PCR from case patients and controls.
Results. Of 984 eligible case patients, 810 (84%) were enrolled in the study; 232 (29%) had VSP. Blood cultures were positive in 52 of 749 case patients (7%). A predominant potential pathogen was identified in sputum culture in 70 of 417 case patients (17%). A respiratory virus was detected by PCR from nasopharyngeal swab specimens in 486 of 805 case patients (60%) and 172 of 369 controls (47%). Only respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) showed a statistically significant association between virus detection in the nasopharynx and pneumonia hospitalization (odds ratio, 12.5; 95% confidence interval, 3.1–51.5). Among 257 case patients in whom all specimens (excluding serum specimens) were collected, bacteria were identified in 24 (9%), viruses in 137 (53%), mixed viral and bacterial infection in 39 (15%), and no pathogen in 57 (22%); bacterial causes outnumbered viral causes when the results of the case-control analysis were considered.
Conclusions. A potential etiology was detected in >75% of children admitted with SP or VSP. Except for RSV, the case-control analysis did not detect an association between viral detection in the nasopharynx and hospitalization for pneumonia.
Close postdischarge follow-up could help prevent future severe respiratory
Severe lower respiratory tract infection (LRTI) in infants caused by respiratory
syncytial virus (RSV) has been associated with later pneumonia hospitalization
among children. To determine risk for pneumonia after RSV hospitalization in
infancy, we conducted a retrospective cohort analysis of 2,813 infants admitted
to a hospital in Kenya and identified readmissions for pneumonia among this
group during early childhood (<60 months of age).
Incidence of readmission for pneumonia was higher for children whose first
admission as infants was for LRTI and who were <3
months of age than for children who were first admitted as infants for non-LRTI,
irrespective of RSV status. Incidence of readmission for pneumonia with wheeze
was higher for children whose first admission involved RSV compared with those
who had non-RSV LRTI. Excess pneumonia risk persisted for 2 years after the
initial hospitalization. Close postdischarge follow-up of infants with LRTI,
with or without RSV, could help prevent severe pneumonia later in childhood.
respiratory syncytial virus; lower respiratory tract infection; pneumonia; infancy; childhood; wheeze; postdischarge; respiratory infections; hospitalization; viruses; Kenya
Community-acquired pneumonia is a common cause of hospitalization among African adults, and Streptococcus pneumoniae is assumed to be a frequent cause. Pneumococcal conjugate vaccine is currently being introduced into childhood immunization programs in Africa. The case for adult vaccination is dependent on the contribution of the pneumococcus to the hospital pneumonia burden.
Pneumococcal diagnosis is complex because there is no gold standard, and culture methods are invalidated by antibiotic use. We used latent class analysis to estimate the proportion of pneumonia episodes caused by pneumococcus. Furthermore, we extended this methodology to evaluate the effect of antimicrobial treatment on test accuracies and the prevalence of the disease. The study combined data from five validation studies of pneumococcal diagnostic tests performed on 281 Kenyan adults with pneumonia.
The proportion of pneumonia episodes attributable to pneumococcus was 0.46 (95% confidence interval = 0.36-0.57). Failure to account for the effect of antimicrobial exposure underestimates this proportion as 0.32. A history of antibiotic exposure was a poor predictor of anti-microbial activity in patients' urine. Blood culture sensitivity for pneumococcus was estimated at 0.24 among patients with antibiotic exposure, and 0.75 among those without.
The large contribution of pneumococcus to adult pneumonia provides a strong case for the investigation of pneumococcal vaccines in African adults.
Background. Influenza data gaps in sub-Saharan Africa include incidence, case fatality, seasonal patterns, and associations with prevalent disorders.
Methods. Nasopharyngeal samples from children aged <12 years who were admitted to Kilifi District Hospital during 2007–2010 with severe or very severe pneumonia and resided in the local demographic surveillance system were screened for influenza A, B, and C viruses by molecular methods. Outpatient children provided comparative data.
Results. Of 2002 admissions, influenza A virus infection was diagnosed in 3.5% (71), influenza B virus infection, in 0.9% (19); and influenza C virus infection, in 0.8% (11 of 1404 tested). Four patients with influenza died. Among outpatients, 13 of 331 (3.9%) with acute respiratory infection and 1 of 196 without acute respiratory infection were influenza positive. The annual incidence of severe or very severe pneumonia, of influenza (any type), and of influenza A, was 1321, 60, and 43 cases per 100 000 <5 years of age, respectively. Peak occurrence was in quarters 3–4 each year, and approximately 50% of cases involved infants: temporal association with bacteremia was absent. Hypoxia was more frequent among pneumonia cases involving influenza (odds ratio, 1.78; 95% confidence interval, 1.04–1.96). Influenza A virus subtypes were seasonal H3N2 (57%), seasonal H1N1 (12%), and 2009 pandemic H1N1 (7%).
Conclusions. The burden of influenza was small during 2007–2010 in this pediatric hospital in Kenya. Influenza A virus subtype H3N2 predominated, and 2009 pandemic influenza A virus subtype H1N1 had little impact.
Background. To understand and model the impact of pneumococcal conjugate vaccines at the population level, we need to know the transmission dynamics of individual pneumococcal serotypes. We estimated serotype-specific clearance and acquisition rates of nasopharyngeal colonization among Kenyan children.
Methods. Children aged 3–59 months who were identified as carriers in a cross-sectional survey were followed-up approximately 1, 2, 4, 8, 16, and 32 days later and monthly thereafter until culture of 2 consecutive swabs yielded an alternative serotype or no pneumococcus. Serotype-specific clearance rates were estimated by exponential regression of interval-censored carriage durations. Duration was estimated as the reciprocal of the clearance rate, and acquisition rates were estimated on the basis of prevalence and duration, assuming an equilibrium state.
Results. Of 2840 children sampled between October 2006 and December 2008, 1868 were carriers. The clearance rate was 0.032 episodes/day (95% confidence interval [CI], .030–.034), for a carriage duration of 31.3 days, and the rate varied by serotype (P < .0005). Carriage durations for the 28 serotypes with ≥10 carriers ranged from 6.7 to 50 days. Clearance rates increased with year of age, adjusted for serotype (hazard ratio, 1.21; 95% CI, 1.15–1.27). The acquisition rate was 0.061 episodes/day (95% CI, .055–.067), which did not vary with age. Serotype-specific acquisition rates varied from 0.0002 to 0.0022 episodes/day. Serotype-specific acquisition rates correlated with prevalence (r = 0.91; P < .00005) and with acquisition rates measured in a separate study involving 1404 newborns in Kilifi (r = 0.87; P < .00005).
Conclusions. The large sample size and short swabbing intervals provide a precise description of the prevalence, duration, and acquisition of carriage of 28 pneumococcal serotypes. In Kilifi, young children experience approximately 8 episodes of carriage per year. The declining prevalence with age is attributable to increasing clearance rates.
Summary The Kilifi Health and Demographic Surveillance System (KHDSS), located on the Indian Ocean coast of Kenya, was established in 2000 as a record of births, pregnancies, migration events and deaths and is maintained by 4-monthly household visits. The study area was selected to capture the majority of patients admitted to Kilifi District Hospital. The KHDSS has 260 000 residents and the hospital admits 4400 paediatric patients and 3400 adult patients per year. At the hospital, morbidity events are linked in real time by a computer search of the population register. Linked surveillance was extended to KHDSS vaccine clinics in 2008.
KHDSS data have been used to define the incidence of hospital presentation with childhood infectious diseases (e.g. rotavirus diarrhoea, pneumococcal disease), to test the association between genetic risk factors (e.g. thalassaemia and sickle cell disease) and infectious diseases, to define the community prevalence of chronic diseases (e.g. epilepsy), to evaluate access to health care and to calculate the operational effectiveness of major public health interventions (e.g. conjugate Haemophilus influenzae type b vaccine). Rapport with residents is maintained through an active programme of community engagement. A system of collaborative engagement exists for sharing data on survival, morbidity, socio-economic status and vaccine coverage.
Disease burden; invasive bacterial diseases; haemoglobinopathies; vaccine effectiveness; child mortality; demography
To develop a case definition for the Pneumonia Etiology Research for Child Health (PERCH) project, we sought a widely acceptable classification that was linked to existing pneumonia research and focused on very severe cases. We began with the World Health Organization’s classification of severe/very severe pneumonia and refined it through literature reviews and a 2-stage process of expert consultation. PERCH will study hospitalized children, aged 1–59 months, with pneumonia who present with cough or difficulty breathing and have either severe pneumonia (lower chest wall indrawing) or very severe pneumonia (central cyanosis, difficulty breastfeeding/drinking, vomiting everything, convulsions, lethargy, unconsciousness, or head nodding). It will exclude patients with recent hospitalization and children with wheeze whose indrawing resolves after bronchodilator therapy. The PERCH investigators agreed upon standard interpretations of the symptoms and signs. These will be maintained by a clinical standardization monitor who conducts repeated instruction at each site and by recurrent local training and testing.
Methods for the identification and selection of patients (cases) with severe or very severe pneumonia and controls for the Pneumonia Etiology Research for Child Health (PERCH) project were needed. Issues considered include eligibility criteria and sampling strategies, whether to enroll hospital or community controls, whether to exclude controls with upper respiratory tract infection (URTI) or nonsevere pneumonia, and matching criteria, among others. PERCH ultimately decided to enroll community controls and an additional human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)–infected control group at high HIV-prevalence sites matched on age and enrollment date of cases; controls with symptoms of URTI or nonsevere pneumonia will not be excluded. Systematic sampling of cases (when necessary) and random sampling of controls will be implemented. For each issue, we present the options that were considered, the advantages and disadvantages of each, the rationale for the methods selected for PERCH, and remaining implications and limitations.
The Pneumonia Etiology Research for Child Health (PERCH) project is the largest multicountry etiology study of childhood pneumonia since the Board on Science and Technology in International Development studies of the 1980s. However, it is not the only recent or ongoing pneumonia etiology study, and even with seven sites, it cannot capture all epidemiologic settings in the developing world. Funding providers, researchers and policymakers rely on the best available evidence to strategically plan programs, new research directions and interventions. We aimed to describe the current landscape of recent pneumonia etiology studies in children under 5 years of age in the developed and developing world, as ascertained by a literature review of relevant studies with data since the year 2000 and a survey of researchers in the field of childhood pneumonia. We collected information on the study population, study design, case definitions, laboratory samples and methods and identified pathogens. A literature review identified 88 studies with child pneumonia etiology results. As of June 2010, our survey of researchers identified an additional 65 ongoing and recently completed child pneumonia etiology studies. This demonstrates the broad existing context into which the PERCH study must be placed. However, the landscape analysis also reveals a multiplicity of case definitions, levels of clinician involvement, facility types, specimen collection, and laboratory techniques. It reinforces the need for the standardization of methods and analyses for present and future pneumonia etiology studies in order to optimize their cumulative potential to accurately describe the microbial causes of childhood pneumonia.
Diagnosing the etiologic agent of pneumonia has an essential role in ensuring the most appropriate and effective therapy for individual patients and is critical to guiding the development of treatment and prevention strategies. However, establishing the etiology of pneumonia remains challenging because of the relative inaccessibility of the infected tissue and the difficulty in obtaining samples without contamination by upper respiratory tract secretions. Here, we review the published and unpublished literature on various specimens available for the diagnosis of pediatric pneumonia. We discuss the advantages and limitations of each specimen, and discuss the rationale for the specimens to be collected for the Pneumonia Etiology Research for Child Health study.
Before the introduction of the heptavalent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (Prevnar-7), the relative prevalence of serotypes of Streptococcus pneumoniae was fairly stable worldwide. We sought to develop a statistical tool to predict the relative frequency of different serotypes among disease isolates in the pre- and post-Prevnar-7 eras using the limited amount of data that is widely available.
We initially used pre-Prevnar-7 carriage prevalence and estimates of invasiveness derived from case-fatality data as predictors for the relative abundance of serotypes causing invasive pneumococcal disease during the pre- and post-Prevnar-7 eras, using negative binomial regression. We fit the model to pre-Prevnar-7 invasive pneumococcal disease data from England and Wales and used these data to (1) evaluate the performance of the model using several datasets and (2) evaluate the utility of the country-specific carriage data. We then fit an alternative model that used polysaccharide structure, a correlate of prevalence that does not require country-specific information and could be useful in determining the post-vaccine population structure, as a predictor.
Predictions from the initial model fit data from several pediatric populations in the pre-Prevnar-7 era. Following the introduction of Prevnar-7, the model still had a good negative predictive value, though substantial unexplained variation remained. The alternative model had a good negative predictive value but poor positive predictive value. Both models demonstrate that the pneumococcal population follows a somewhat predictable pattern even after vaccination.
This approach provides a preliminary framework to evaluate the potential patterns and impact of serotypes causing invasive pneumococcal disease.
Pneumococcal conjugate vaccines (PCV) reduce nasopharyngeal carriage of vaccine-serotype pneumococci but increase in the carriage of non-vaccine serotypes. We studied the epidemiology of carriage among children 3–59 months old before vaccine introduction in Kilifi, Kenya.
In a rolling cross-sectional study from October 2006 to December 2008 we approached 3570 healthy children selected at random from the population register of the Kilifi Health and Demographic Surveillance System and 134 HIV-infected children registered at a specialist clinic. A single nasopharyngeal swab was transported in STGG and cultured on gentamicin blood agar. A single colony of pneumococcus was serotyped by Quellung reaction.
Families of 2840 children in the population-based sample and 99 in the HIV-infected sample consented to participate; carriage prevalence was 65.8% (95% CI, 64.0–67.5%) and 76% (95% CI, 66–84%) in the two samples, respectively. Carriage prevalence declined progressively with age from 79% at 6–11 months to 51% at 54–59 months (p<0.0005). Carriage was positively associated with coryza (Odds ratio 2.63, 95%CI 2.12–3.25) and cough (1.55, 95%CI 1.26–1.91) and negatively associated with recent antibiotic use (0.53 95%CI 0.34–0.81). 53 different serotypes were identified and 42% of isolates were of serotypes contained in the 10-valent PCV. Common serotypes declined in prevalence with age while less common serotypes did not.
Carriage prevalence in children was high, serotypes were diverse, and the majority of strains were of serotypes not represented in the 10-valent PCV. Vaccine introduction in Kenya will provide a natural test of virulence for the many circulating non-vaccine serotypes.
In sub-Saharan Africa, community-acquired bacteraemia is an important cause of illness and death in children. Our aim was to establish the magnitude and causes of hospital-acquired (nosocomial) bacteraemia in African children.
We reviewed prospectively collected surveillance data of 33 188 admissions to Kilifi District Hospital, Kenya, between April 16, 2002, and Sept 30, 2009. We defined bacteraemia as nosocomial if it occurred 48 h or more after admission. We estimated the per-admission risk, daily rate, effect on mortality, and microbial cause of nosocomial bacteraemia and analysed risk factors by multivariable Cox regression. The effect on morbidity was measured as the increase in hospital stay by comparison with time-matched patients without bacteraemia.
The overall risk of nosocomial bacteraemia during this period was 5·9/1000 admissions (95% CI 5·2–6·9) but we recorded an underlying rise in risk of 27% per year. The incidence was 1·0/1000 days in hospital (0·87–1·14), which is about 40 times higher than that of community-acquired bacteraemia in the same region. Mortality in patients with nosocomial bacteraemia was 53%, compared with 24% in community-acquired bacteraemia and 6% in patients without bacteraemia. In survivors, nosocomial bacteraemia lengthened hospital stay by 10·1 days (3·0–17·2). Klebsiella pneumoniae, Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus, Acinetobacter spp, group D streptococci, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa accounted for three-quarters of nosocomial infections. Nosocomial bacteraemia was significantly associated with severe malnutrition (hazard ratio 2·52, 95% CI 1·79–3·57) and blood transfusion in children without severe anaemia (4·99; 3·39–7·37).
Our findings show that although nosocomial bacteraemia is rare, it has serious effects on morbidity and mortality, and the microbiological causes are distinct from those of community-acquired bacteraemia. Nosocomial infections are largely unrecognised or undocumented as a health risk in low-income countries, but they are likely to become public health priorities as awareness of their occurrence increases and as other prominent childhood diseases are progressively controlled.
Paired nasopharyngeal and oropharyngeal swabs collected from 533 children hospitalized with lower respiratory tract infection were assessed by multiplex reverse transcription-PCR. Oropharyngeal swabs increased the number of viral infections detected by 15%, compared to collection of a nasopharyngeal swab alone. This advantage was most pronounced for detection of influenza, parainfluenza, and adenovirus.