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Eur J Clin Microbiol Infect Dis. 2008 Mar;27(3):223-6. Epub 2007 Nov 16.

The epidemiology of varicella in school-aged Greek children before the implementation of universal vaccination.

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Second Pediatric Clinic, Agia Sophia Children's Hospital, Goudi, Greece.


Data on local epidemiology is necessary when deciding on the introduction of a vaccine. Parents of children attending 1st and 6th grades completed a questionnaire on demographical data and varicella history. Analyzing 70,226 questionnaires, varicella was reported in 63.6% and 78.6% of 1st and 6th grade children, respectively (mean age 4.75 years), indicating that a quarter of children entering adolescence are susceptible. Children attending day care and children with older siblings had contracted chickenpox at a younger age. In conclusion, in Greece, in addition to introducing universal varicella vaccination, it is necessary to identify older children at risk and offer catch-up vaccination.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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