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Clin Infect Dis. 2011 Jan 1;52 Suppl 1:S109-15. doi: 10.1093/cid/ciq014.

Virus detection and duration of illness among patients with 2009 pandemic influenza A (H1N1) virus infection in Texas.

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  • 1Epidemic Intelligence Service, Scientific Education and Professional Development Program Office (Proposed), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia, USA.


Knowledge from early outbreaks is limited regarding the virus detection and illness duration of the 2009 pandemic influenza A (H1N1) infections. During the period from April to May 2009 in Texas, we collected serial nasopharyngeal (NP) and stool specimens from 35 participants, testing by real-time reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (rRT-PCR) and culture. The participants were aged 2 months to 71 years; 25 (71%) were under 18. The median duration of measured fever was 3.0 days and of virus detection in NP specimens was 4.2 days; however, few specimens were collected between days 5-9. The duration of virus detection (4.2 days) was similar to the duration of fever (3.5 days) (RR, 1.14; 95% CI, .66-1.95; P = .8), but was shorter than the duration of cough (11.0 days) (RR, .41; 95% CI, .24-.68; P < .001). We detected viral RNA in two participants' stools. All cultures were negative. This investigation suggests that the duration of virus detection was likely similar to the seasonal influenza virus.

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