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Seroprevalence of dengue antibodies, annual incidence and risk factors among children in southern Vietnam

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Dengue is highly endemic in southern Vietnam and all four serotypes of dengue virus have already been identified. To determine the age-specific prevalence of dengue and associated risk factors, we conducted a serological study at two primary schools and assessed risk factors by analysing children's questionnaires and household surveys. Sera were collected from 961 primary schoolchildren in Binh Thuan Province and tested for the presence of dengue virus serum antibodies using an indirect immunoglobulin G (IgG) enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). The antibody prevalence of the total population was 65.7% (n = 631) which increased from 53.0 to 88.2% with age. The annual incidence of a first dengue infection, estimated by binary regression of the seroprevalence by age, was 11.7%. Interestingly, the prevalence of dengue IgG antibodies was significantly higher in children who confirmed using a pit latrine (RR 1.467, 95% CI: 1.245–1.730) and whose domestic environment contained discarded cans (RR 1.238, 95% CI: 1.042–1.470) and pigs (RR 1.228, 95% CI: 1.002–1.504). The epidemiology of dengue in southern Vietnam is stable with a constantly high annual incidence of first infections. Transmission occurs mainly peri-domestically, which has important public health implications.
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Keywords: Vietnam; dengue; incidence; regression analysis; risk factors; seroepidemiological studies

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Division of Infectious Diseases, Tropical Medicine and AIDS, Academic Medical Center, Amsterdam, The Netherlands 2: Department of Tropical Diseases, Cho Ray Hospital, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam 3: Malaria and Goitre Control Center of Binh Thuan Province, Phan Thiet, Vietnam 4: Department of Medical Statistics and Bioinformatics, Leiden University Medical Center, Leiden, The Netherlands

Publication date: April 1, 2005

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