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An Epidemic of Echovirus 18 Meningitis

Catherine M. Wilfert, Brian A. Lauer, Mitchell Cohen, M. Lyndle Costenbader and Eugene Myers
The Journal of Infectious Diseases
Vol. 131, No. 1 (Jan., 1975), pp. 75-78
Published by: Oxford University Press
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/30106654
Page Count: 4
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An Epidemic of Echovirus 18 Meningitis
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Abstract

The first reported outbreak of echovirus 18 meningitis in the United States occurred during the summer of 1972 in Durham, North Carolina. One hundred three cases of aseptic meningitis were seen at Duke University Medical Center over a period of four months. Most of the patients were less than 25 years old, black, and residents of Durham County or nearby counties. Symptoms included headache (92%), fever (76%), nuchal rigidity (67%), and nausea and/or vomiting (51%). In contrast to previously published reports of echovirus 18 infection, diarrhea and rash were infrequent (6% and 5%, respectively). There were no deaths. Counts of white blood cells in the cerebrospinal fluid ranged from 0 to 1,540 cells/mm³, but 90% of the patients had < 500 cells/mm³. Echovirus 18 was recovered from the cerebrospinal fluid of 55 of 78 patients, and echovirus 11 was isolated from two patients. Virus was recovered from the cerebrospinal fluid of 12 patients despite white blood cell counts in cerebrospinal fluid of < 10 cells/mm³.

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