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J Infect Dis. 2011 Jul 15;204(2):193-9. doi: 10.1093/infdis/jir238.

Transocular entry of seasonal influenza-attenuated virus aerosols and the efficacy of n95 respirators, surgical masks, and eye protection in humans.

Author information

  • 1Department of Internal Medicine, Section on Infectious Diseases, Winston-Salem, North Carolina 27157-1042, USA. wbischof@wfubmc.edu

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The efficacy of barrier precautions to prevent influenza transmission is unknown.

METHODS:

Twenty-eight participants were exposed to monodispersed live attenuated influenza vaccine (LAIV) particles (4.9 μm) in 6 groups: group 1, no precautions; group 2, ocular exposure only; group 3, surgical mask without eye protection; group 4, surgical mask with eye protection; group 5, fit-tested N95 respirator without eye protection; and group 6, fit-tested N95 respirator with eye protection. Influenza was detected by reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and culture in nasal washes. Exact 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were calculated.

RESULTS:

Influenza was detected in 4 of 4 participants in group 1 (95% CI, 0-.60), 3 of 4 in group 2 (95% CI, .006-.806]), 5 of 5 in group 3 (95% CI, 0-.522), 5 of 5 in group 4, (95% CI, 0-.522), 3 of 5 in group 5 (95% CI, .053-.853), and 1 of 5 in group 6 (95% CI, .05-.72). RT-PCR revealed significant differences between group 1 and all other groups except group 3.

CONCLUSIONS:

Transocular transmission of LAIV occured in most participants suggesting the necessity of eye protection. An N95 respirator provided the best guard further enhanced by eye protection.

Comment in

PMID:
21673029
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC3164472
Free PMC Article

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