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Influenza A infection in young infants
  1. David Rekhtman1,
  2. Dana G Wolf2,
  3. Floris Levy-Khademi1,
  4. Diana Averbuch3,
  5. Eitan Kerem1,
  6. Isaiah D Wexler1
  1. 1Department of Pediatrics, Hadassah-Hebrew University Medical Center, Mount Scopus, Jerusalem, Israel
  2. 2Department of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases, Hadassah-Hebrew University Medical Center, Ein Kerem, Jerusalem, Israel
  3. 3Department of Pediatrics, Hadassah-Hebrew University Medical Center, Ein Kerem, Jerusalem, Israel
  1. Correspondence to Professor Isaiah Wexler, Department of Pediatrics, Hadassah-Hebrew University Medical Center, Mount Scopus, POB 24035, 91240 Jerusalem, Israel; shwexler{at}hadassah.org.il

Abstract

Objective To determine the clinical characteristics of infants ≤2 months old hospitalised with influenza A.

Study design The study was a retrospective analysis of infants ≤2 months old hospitalised with fever, respiratory distress and/or sepsis. Clinical signs, laboratory values, hospital duration and outcome were compared between children with influenza A and other viruses.

Results The charts of 268 infants were reviewed. 29 (11%) children had laboratory-confirmed influenza A infection. Unique features associated with influenza infection included the high number presenting with fever (97%) and a history of exposure to family members with a flu-like illness (69%). A significantly lower rate of respiratory distress was observed in the influenza group compared with respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) (24% vs 89%, p≤0.001). Median duration of hospitalisation for influenza was shorter than RSV (4 days vs 6 days, p<0.001).

Conclusions In young infants, influenza A is a relatively mild disease compared to RSV and is primarily associated with upper respiratory tract manifestations.

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Footnotes

  • The first two authors contributed equally to this work.

  • Competing interests None.

  • Ethics approval This study was conducted with the approval of the Hadassah Medical Center Institutional Review Board.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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