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Emerg Infect Dis. 2003 Apr;9(4):443-7.

Risk for severe group A streptococcal disease among patients' household contacts.

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Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia 30333, USA.


From January 1997 to April 1999, we determined attack rates for cases of invasive group A streptococcal (GAS) disease in household contacts of index patients using data from Active Bacterial Core Surveillance sites. Of 680 eligible index-patient households, 525 (77.2%) were enrolled in surveillance. Of 1,514 household contacts surveyed, 127 (8.4%) sought medical care, 24 (1.6%) required hospital care, and none died during the 30-day reference period. One confirmed GAS case in a household contact was reported (attack rate, 66.1/100,000 household contacts). One household contact had severe GAS-compatible illness without confirmed etiology. Our study suggests that subsequent cases of invasive GAS disease can occur, albeit rarely. The risk estimate from this study is important for developing recommendations on the use of chemoprophylaxis for household contacts of persons with invasive GAS disease.

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