Objective: To assess whether the influenza peak in populations precedes the annual peak for invasive pneumococcal infections (IPI) in winter.
Design: Ecological study. Active surveillance data on influenza A and IPI in children up to 16 years of age collected from 1997 to 2003 were analysed.
Setting: Paediatric hospitals in Germany.
Patients: Children under 16 years of age.
Results: In all years under study, the influenza A season did not appear to affect the IPI season (p = 0.49). Specifically, the influenza peak never preceded the IPI peak.
Conclusion: On a population level there was no indication that the annual influenza epidemic triggered the winter increase in the IPI rate or the peak of the IPI distribution in children.
Statistics from Altmetric.com
Competing interests: Rüdiger von Kries is conducting a surveillance study on invasive pneumococcal infections in children in Germany funded by the manufacturer of a 7-valent pneumococcal vaccine, Prevenar (Wyeth) and – on a few occasions – has accepted honoraria for lectures given at meetings sponsored by Wyeth. Ulrich Heininger is a member of the Prevenar Advisory Board of Wyeth/Switzerland.
Funding: The surveillance of invasive pneumococcal infections in children in Germany was supported by Wyeth Pharma Germany, Münster and by a grant (FKZ 01KI0213) for PID-ARI.net (Pediatric Infectious Diseases Network on Acute Respiratory Tract Infections) awarded by the Bundesministerium für Forschung (BMBF).