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Euro Surveill. 2012 May 24;17(21). pii: 20182.

Emergence of West Nile virus infections in humans in Turkey, 2010 to 2011.

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  • 1Refik Saydam National Public Health Agency, Ankara, Turkey.


In 2010, 47 human cases of West Nile virus (WNV)infection, including 12 laboratory-confirmed and 35 probable cases, were identified in Turkey. These were the first cases detected during routine surveillance.The patients were from 15 provinces, mainly located in the western part of the country. Incidence was 0.19/100,000 with a maximum of 1.39 in Sakarya province.Forty of the total 47 cases showed neuroinvasive manifestation. Median age was 58 years with a range of four to 86. Ten of the patients died. Enhanced surveillance in humans and animals and mosquito control measures were implemented. The WNV infections were included in the national notifiable diseases list as of April 2011. In 2011, three probable and two confirmed cases of WNV infection were diagnosed in provinces where infections had been detected in the previous year, supporting a lower activity than 2010. However,detection of WNV infections in humans in 2010 and 2011 consecutively, may indicate that WNV has become endemic in the western part of Turkey. Field epidemiological studies were undertaken to understand more about the nature of infection in Turkey.

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