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Emerg Infect Dis. 2016 Jan;22(1):49-55. doi: 10.3201/eid2201.151340.

Risk Factors for Primary Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus Illness in Humans, Saudi Arabia, 2014.

Abstract

Risk factors for primary Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) illness in humans are incompletely understood. We identified all primary MERS-CoV cases reported in Saudi Arabia during March-November 2014 by excluding those with history of exposure to other cases of MERS-CoV or acute respiratory illness of unknown cause or exposure to healthcare settings within 14 days before illness onset. Using a case-control design, we assessed differences in underlying medical conditions and environmental exposures among primary case-patients and 2-4 controls matched by age, sex, and neighborhood. Using multivariable analysis, we found that direct exposure to dromedary camels during the 2 weeks before illness onset, as well as diabetes mellitus, heart disease, and smoking, were each independently associated with MERS-CoV illness. Further investigation is needed to better understand animal-to-human transmission of MERS-CoV.

KEYWORDS:

MERS-CoV; Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus; Saudi Arabia; case–control study; diabetes mellitus; dromedary camels; heart disease; primary infection; risk factors; smoking; transmission; viruses; zoonosis

PMID:
26692185
PMCID:
PMC4696714
DOI:
10.3201/eid2201.151340
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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