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First wave of the influenza A/H1N1v pandemic in Switzerland


Nickel, C H; Stephan, F P; Dangel, M; Blume, K; Gehrisch, R; Dumoulin, A; Tschudin, S; Keller, D I; Hirsch, H H; Widmer, A F; Bingisser, R (2009). First wave of the influenza A/H1N1v pandemic in Switzerland. Swiss Medical Weekly, 139(51-52):731-737.

Abstract

AIM: To describe the disease burden, clinical pattern and outcome of influenza-related cases presenting to a Swiss Emergency Department (ED), during the first wave of the 2009 pandemic. METHODS: Retrospective analysis of prospectively collected data at the University Hospital of Basel, Switzerland. All patients presenting to the ED with influenza-like symptoms from June 1 to October 23, 2009, were studied. Rate of hospitalisation, demographic characteristics, symptoms, microbiological diagnoses and complications of influenza infection were analysed. RESULTS: One tenth (808 of 8356 patients) of all non-trauma ED presentations, during the study period, were a result of suspected influenza-related illness. Influenza A/H1N1v infection accounted for 5% of these presentations. Patients aged 50 years or less accounted for 87% of these presentations and for 100% of A/H1N1v infection. The highest detection rate of A/H1N1v-infection occurred in July, and the highest rate of clinical presentations occurred in August 2009. Underlying medical disease was observed in 14% of all patients. The presence of fever, cough and myalgia was the prime clinical predictor for the presence of A/H1N1v infection. 16% of patients with this triad suffered from A/H1N1v. CONCLUSION: Suspected A/H1N1v infection contributed to a considerable health care burden in Switzerland. However, the rate of true positivity was low (5%), hospitalisations rare (5%), and mortality did not occur. Therefore, the first wave of the A/H1N1v pandemic in Switzerland was rather media "hype" than real threat.

AIM: To describe the disease burden, clinical pattern and outcome of influenza-related cases presenting to a Swiss Emergency Department (ED), during the first wave of the 2009 pandemic. METHODS: Retrospective analysis of prospectively collected data at the University Hospital of Basel, Switzerland. All patients presenting to the ED with influenza-like symptoms from June 1 to October 23, 2009, were studied. Rate of hospitalisation, demographic characteristics, symptoms, microbiological diagnoses and complications of influenza infection were analysed. RESULTS: One tenth (808 of 8356 patients) of all non-trauma ED presentations, during the study period, were a result of suspected influenza-related illness. Influenza A/H1N1v infection accounted for 5% of these presentations. Patients aged 50 years or less accounted for 87% of these presentations and for 100% of A/H1N1v infection. The highest detection rate of A/H1N1v-infection occurred in July, and the highest rate of clinical presentations occurred in August 2009. Underlying medical disease was observed in 14% of all patients. The presence of fever, cough and myalgia was the prime clinical predictor for the presence of A/H1N1v infection. 16% of patients with this triad suffered from A/H1N1v. CONCLUSION: Suspected A/H1N1v infection contributed to a considerable health care burden in Switzerland. However, the rate of true positivity was low (5%), hospitalisations rare (5%), and mortality did not occur. Therefore, the first wave of the A/H1N1v pandemic in Switzerland was rather media "hype" than real threat.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic and Policlinic for Internal Medicine
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:26 December 2009
Deposited On:10 Mar 2010 08:33
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 13:48
Publisher:EMH Swiss Medical Publishers
ISSN:0036-7672
Free access at:PubMed ID. An embargo period may apply.
PubMed ID:19918702
Permanent URL: https://doi.org/10.5167/uzh-28265

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