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Vaccine. 2006 Feb 27;24(9):1332-8. Epub 2005 Sep 26.

Assessment of measles incidence, measles-related complications and hospitalisations during an outbreak in a southern Italian region.

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Reparto Epidemiologia delle Malattie Infettive, Centro Nazionale di Epidemiologia Sorveglianza e Promozione della Salute, Istituto Superiore di Sanità, Viale Regina Elena 299, 00161 Rome, Italy.


A large measles epidemic occurred in 2002 in Campania, a region of southern Italy with inadequate vaccination coverage. We evaluated the burden of the outbreak in children <15 years of age using different data sources. The measles standardized incidence rate was 5,757/100,000, corresponding to 63,368 estimated cases (95% CI: 59,544--67,373). Measles virus strains were identified as belonging to the D7 genotype. The estimated complication rate was 7.6%. A total of 972 measles hospitalisations were detected, giving a hospitalisation rate of 88.3/100,000. Three deaths occurred. These results show that measles can still represent a serious health threat even in industrialized countries.

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