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J Med Virol. 2001 Jun;64(2):167-74.

Multicentered study of viral acute lower respiratory infections in children from four cities of Argentina, 1993-1994.

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Centro de Educación Médica e Investigaciones Clínicas N. Quirno (CEMIC), Laboratorio de Virología, Galvan 4102(1431), Buenos Aires, Argentina.


This study describes the first multicentered study of acute lower respiratory infection viral etiology in young children from four different geographical areas of Argentina. A total of 1,278 children under 5 years of age, hospitalized in primary care centers from Buenos Aires, Córdoba, Santa Fé and Mar del Plata cities during a 2-year period were studied (1993-1994). Nasopharyngeal aspirates were investigated for respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), adenovirus, parainfluenza, and influenza A and B viruses by indirect immunofluorescence. Out of the patients studied, 946 (74%) were under 1 year of age. Viruses were detected in 399 patients (32%). RSV was observed in 25.3% of the samples, representing 78.2% of all viral positive cases. Adenoviruses were detected in 2.5% of the cases, parainfluenza in 2.2%, influenza A in 2.1%, and influenza B in 0.2%. Compared with other viruses, the higher RSV frequency was statistically significant (P < 0.000). Most RSV cases were detected between May and September with a significant peak in July (P < 0.000). Pneumonia was observed in 46% of the patients, bronchiolitis in 41% and other entities in 13%. The case fatality rate observed during the 2 year study was 0.73%. Most of the above respiratory viruses were detected in the four cities, however, the frequency of RSV and influenza were different in the southern city.

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