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Pediatr Infect Dis J. 2005 Oct;24(10):892-6.

Tick-borne encephalitis in children in Styria and Slovenia between 1980 and 2003.

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Department of General Pediatrics, Medical University of Graz, Austria.



To describe the effect of the Austrian vaccination program against tick-borne encephalitis (TBE) on the incidence of this disease in children from Styria, an Austrian federal state, and to compare it with that in Slovenia, the neighboring country with a risk to acquire TBE similar to that of Styria.


A retrospective population-based cohort study was performed with the use of discharge data from all Styrian pediatric hospitals and data from the Center for Communicable Diseases at the National Institute of Public Health in Ljubljana, Slovenia.


From January 1980 to December 2003, 139 cases of TBE in children younger than 16 years were observed in Styria. The annual incidence of TBE/100,000 Styrian children declined from 2.5-9.3 cases between 1980 and 1986 to 0-2.2 between 1987 and 1993 and to 0-1 between 1994 and 2003. Extrapolating the incidence of 6.3 cases/100,000 children between 1980 and 1986 to the time from 1994 to 2003, 124 pediatric TBE cases had been prevented in Styria in the past 10 years.


Our data show that the Austrian vaccination program against TBE can lead to the nearly complete disappearance of TBE in children living in areas highly endemic for TBE.

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