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Free Content Seroepidemiology of leptospirosis in southern Vietnamese children

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Summary Objective 

To estimate the seroprevalence of human leptospirosis in southern Vietnam. Methods 

All pupils (n = 961) of two primary schools in two communes in southern Vietnam were screened for the presence of serum Leptospira immunoglobulin (Ig)G. Leptospira IgM was tested in 92 randomly selected samples. IgM and IgG were tested with a commercially available enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Results 

Leptospira IgG was found in 123 (12.8%, 95% CI: 10.8–15.1) children with a male:female ratio of 1.5:1. At the age of 7 years the prevalence was 11%. Log-linear binary regression of the IgG seroprevalence by age showed a mean seroconversion rate of 1.5% (95% CI: 1.23–1.75) per year. Five (5.4%, 95% CI: 2.3–12.1) samples were definitely positive for IgM. Presence of serum Leptospira IgG antibodies was significantly associated with swimming in rivers (RR: 1.745, 95% CI: 1.117–2.724) and wading through water (RR 1.793, 95% CI: 1.181–2.722). Conclusion 

Our data emphasize the importance of leptospirosis among children in Vietnam, despite the absence of severe disease, and stress the need for adequate and cheap diagnostics.

Keywords: Vietnam; incidence; leptospirosis; regression analysis; risk factors; seroepidemiological studies

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1:  Division of Infectious Diseases, Tropical Medicine & AIDS, Academic Medical Center, Amsterdam, the Netherlands 2:  Tropical Diseases Clinical Research Center, Cho Ray Hospital, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam 3:  Binh Thuan Provincial Malaria Station, Phan Thiet City, Vietnam 4:  Department of Biomedical Research, Leptospirosis Reference Centre, Koninklijk Instituut voor de Tropen, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

Publication date: 2006-05-01

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