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Microbiol Immunol. 2005;49(2):107-12.

Epidemiology of typhoid carriers among blood donors and patients with biliary, gastrointestinal and other related diseases.

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Department of Gastroenterology, Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh, India.


Enteric fever due to Salmonella Typhi is a major public health problem. Typhoid carriers have high titres of Vi agglutinins in their sera. We worked out the baseline data for Vi agglutinins from 705 healthy blood donors (controls) by ELISA and compared it with 446 patients with biliary, gastrointestinal and other related diseases (cases). The samples were divided into five groups based on the disease condition of the patients from whom they were collected. Group A (n=196) consisted of patients with stones in the gall bladder/common bile duct and Group B (n=27) with gall bladder carcinoma. Group C (n=33) comprised patients with carcinoma of the pancreas/ampulla, obstructive jaundice and/or cholangiocarcinoma. Group D (n=112) had patients with acute/chronic pancreatitis, abdominal pain, intestinal obstruction, peritonitis, carcinoma oesophagus, chronic diarrhoea, gastrointestinal bleeding and dyspepsia. Group E (n=78) included patients with miscellaneous diseases. The mean absorbance value obtained for healthy subjects +3 standard deviations was taken as the cut-off value for a positive typhoid carrier. In Group A, 10.2% samples were positive; in Group B, 7.4%; in Group C, 12.0%; in Group D, 9.8% and in Group E, 9.0%. There was a highly significant (P <0.001) increase in the presence of Vi agglutinins in the cases compared to the controls. High prevalence of typhoid carriers occurs in patients with biliary, gastrointestinal and other related diseases. Vi serology employing highly purified Vi antigen offers a practical and cost-effective way of screening for S. Typhi carriers.

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