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Pediatr Infect Dis J. 2015 Sep;34(9):e222-32. doi: 10.1097/INF.0000000000000795.

Pertussis Across the Globe: Recent Epidemiologic Trends From 2000 to 2013.

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*Department of Pediatrics, Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University, Chicago, IL; †Department of Immunology, Microbiology, and Molecular Biology, Statens Serum Institut, Copenhagen, Denmark; ‡Department of Pediatrics, Flinders University, Adelaide, Australia; §Department of Pediatrics, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada; ¶Department of Pediatrics, University Children's Hospital (UKBB), University of Basel, Basel, Switzerland; ‖Department of Pediatrics, Laboratorio VacSal, Instituto de Biotecnología y Biología Molecular (IBBM), Facultad de Ciencias Exactas, Universidad Nacional de La Plata, CCT-CONICET La Plata, Argentina; **Department of Pediatrics, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA; ††Department of Pediatrics, Hospital Nacional de Niños de Costa Rica "Dr. Carlos Sáenz Herrera," San José, Costa Rica; and ‡‡Labor:Medizin Krefeld MVZ, Krefeld, Germany.


Pertussis has reemerged as a problem across the world. To better understand the nature of the resurgence, we reviewed recent epidemiologic data and we report disease trends from across the world. Published epidemiologic data from January 2000 to July 2013 were obtained via PubMed searches and open-access websites. Data on vaccine coverage and reported pertussis cases from 2000 through 2012 from the 6 World Health Organization regions were also reviewed. Findings are confounded not only by the lack of systematic and comparable observations in many areas of the world but also by the cyclic nature of pertussis with peaks occurring every 3-5 years. It appears that pertussis incidence has increased in school-age children in North America and western Europe, where acellular pertussis vaccines are used, but an increase has also occurred in some countries that use whole-cell vaccines. Worldwide, pertussis remains a serious health concern, especially for infants, who bear the greatest disease burden. Factors that may contribute to the resurgence include lack of booster immunizations, low vaccine coverage, improved diagnostic methods, and genetic changes in the organism. To better understand the epidemiology of pertussis and optimize disease control, it is important to improve surveillance worldwide, irrespective of pertussis vaccine types and schedules used in each country.

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