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Bartonella seroprevalence in rural Thailand.

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International Emerging Infections Program, Thailand MOPH-US CDC Collaboration, Nonthaburi, Thailand.


We estimated the prevalence of anti-Bartonella antibodies among febrile and non-febrile patients presenting to community hospitals in rural Thailand from February 2002 through March 2003. Single serum specimens were tested for IgG titers to four Bartonella species, B. henselae, B. quintana, B. elizabethae and B. vinsonii subsp vinsonii using an indirect immunofluorescent assay. A titer 21:256 was considered positive. Forty-two febrile patients (9.9%) and 19 non-febrile patients (19%) had positive serology titers to at least one Bartonella species. Age-standardized Bartonella seroprevalence differed significantly between febrile (10%) and non-febrile patients (18%, p=0.047), but did not differ by gender. Among all 521 patients, IgG titers 21:256 to B. henselae were found in 20 participants (3.8%), while 17 (3.3%) had seropositivity to B. quintana, 51 (9.8%) to B. elizabethae, and 19 (3.6%) to B. vinsonii subsp vinsonii. These results suggest exposure to Bartonella species is more common in rural Thailand than previously suspected.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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