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A Hospital-Based Study of Acute Viral Infections of the Respiratory Tract in Thai Children, with Emphasis on Laboratory Diagnosis

Pilaipan Puthavathana, Chantapong Wasi, Uraiwan Kositanont, Subharee Suwanjutha, Teerachai Chantarojanasiri, Wannee Kantakamalakul, Pakanee Kantawateera and Prasert Thongcharoen
Reviews of Infectious Diseases
Vol. 12, Supplement 8. Etiology and Epidemiology of Acute Respiratory Tract Infection in Children in Developing Countries (Nov. - Dec., 1990), pp. S988-S994
Published by: Oxford University Press
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/4455737
Page Count: 7
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A Hospital-Based Study of Acute Viral Infections of the Respiratory Tract in Thai Children, with Emphasis on Laboratory Diagnosis
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Abstract

The hospital-based study described here examined the viruses found in 738 children <5 years old who presented at Ramathibodi Hospital, Bangkok, Thailand, from January 1986 to December 1987 with acute respiratory tract infections. Three methods for detection of viral infection are compared: direct examination of epithelial cells of the respiratory tract with the use of fluorescent antibody staining, isolation of virus, and measurement of antibody in acute- and convalescent-phase sera. Viral infections were found in 44.7% of the study population. Diagnosis by the examination of epithelial cells with the fluorescent antibody staining procedure was found to have several deficiencies; however, this technique was the most sensitive for diagnosis of infection due to respiratory syncytial virus. Isolation of virus was the best method for identification of adenoviruses, parainfluenza 1 and 3 viruses, and influenza B virus. Problems associated with serodiagnosis included failure to obtain specimens of convalescent-phase blood in 24.5% of cases and insensitivity of serodiagnosis for young children except for the identification of antibody to influenza A virus. The combination of all three tests yielded the best rate of detection of virus.

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