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Trop. Med. Infect. Dis., Volume 7, Issue 5 (May 2022) – 19 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): During the COVID-19 pandemic, it can be difficult to distinguish dengue from COVID-19 in endemic areas, as both may present as undifferentiated febrile illness. At a tertiary hospital contending with COVID-19 during a dengue epidemic, a triage strategy of routine COVID-19 testing for febrile patients with viral prodromes was used. All febrile patients with viral prodromes and no epidemiologic risk for COVID-19 were first admitted to a designated ward for COVID-19 testing. This mitigated the potential infection–prevention risk of COVID-19 cases, albeit with an increased length-of-stay for dengue hospitalizations due to initial admission into isolation. View this paper
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Systematic Review
Characteristics of COVID-19 Breakthrough Infections among Vaccinated Individuals and Associated Risk Factors: A Systematic Review
Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2022, 7(5), 81; https://doi.org/10.3390/tropicalmed7050081 - 22 May 2022
Viewed by 1034
Abstract
We sought to assess breakthrough SARS-CoV-2 infections in vaccinated individuals by variant distribution and to identify the common risk associations. The PubMed, Web of Science, ProQuest, and Embase databases were searched from 2019 to 30 January 2022. The outcome of interest was breakthrough [...] Read more.
We sought to assess breakthrough SARS-CoV-2 infections in vaccinated individuals by variant distribution and to identify the common risk associations. The PubMed, Web of Science, ProQuest, and Embase databases were searched from 2019 to 30 January 2022. The outcome of interest was breakthrough infections (BTIs) in individuals who had completed a primary COVID-19 vaccination series. Thirty-three papers were included in the review. BTIs were more common among variants of concern (VOC) of which Delta accounted for the largest number of BTIs (96%), followed by Alpha (0.94%). In addition, 90% of patients with BTIs recovered, 11.6% were hospitalized with mechanical ventilation, and 0.6% resulted in mortality. BTIs were more common in healthcare workers (HCWs) and immunodeficient individuals with a small percentage found in fully vaccinated healthy individuals. VOC mutations were the primary cause of BTIs. Continued mitigation approaches (e.g., wearing masks and social distancing) are warranted even in fully vaccinated individuals to prevent transmission. Further studies utilizing genomic surveillance and heterologous vaccine regimens to boost the immune response are needed to better understand and control BTIs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID-19: Current Status and Future Prospects)
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Review
Acute Viral Gastrointestinal (GI) Infections in the Tropics—A Role for Cartridge-Based Multiplex PCR Panels?
Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2022, 7(5), 80; https://doi.org/10.3390/tropicalmed7050080 - 19 May 2022
Viewed by 621
Abstract
Acute gastroenteritis (AGE) contributes to increased morbidity and mortality worldwide. In particular, children in resource-poor settings suffer from frequent episodes of diarrhea. A variety of pathogens, including bacteria, viruses, fungi, and protozoa, can cause AGE. Common viruses associated with AGE are norovirus, rotavirus, [...] Read more.
Acute gastroenteritis (AGE) contributes to increased morbidity and mortality worldwide. In particular, children in resource-poor settings suffer from frequent episodes of diarrhea. A variety of pathogens, including bacteria, viruses, fungi, and protozoa, can cause AGE. Common viruses associated with AGE are norovirus, rotavirus, astrovirus, adenovirus, and sapovirus. Due to their similar clinical presentation, AGE pathogens cannot be distinguished on clinical grounds rendering the etiological diagnosis challenging. However, reliable diagnosis is essential for individual and public health reasons, e.g., to limit transmission, for appropriate antibiotic use, prognostic appreciation, and vaccination programs. Therefore, high-quality data derived by accurate diagnostics are important to improve global health. In Western industrialized countries, diagnosis relies on microbiological testing, including culture methods, microscopy, immunochromatography, and single-target molecular methods. Recently, multiplex PCR or syndromic panels have been introduced, which simultaneously analyze for multiple pathogens in a very short time. A further technological advancement is cartridge-based syndromic panels, which allow for near patient/point-of-care testing independently from a laboratory. In resource-poor tropical regions, however, laboratory diagnosis is rarely established, and there are little routine laboratory data on the epidemiology of viral AGE pathogens. Limiting factors for the implementation of syndromic panels are high costs, sophisticated equipment, and the need for trained personnel. In addition, pilot studies have shown a large number of viral (co-)detections among healthy controls, thus further challenging their clinical utilization. Hence, there are little evidence-based data on the impact of multiplex syndromic panels from resource-limited regions. Here, we aim to provide a brief overview of what is known about the use of syndromic panels for virus-associated AGE in tropical regions and to address future challenges. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Diarrheagenic Pathogens and Gastrointestinal Infections)
Article
Zoonotic Flavivirus Exposure in Peri-Urban and Suburban Pig-Keeping in Hanoi, Vietnam, and the Knowledge and Preventive Practices of Pig Farmers
Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2022, 7(5), 79; https://doi.org/10.3390/tropicalmed7050079 - 19 May 2022
Viewed by 732
Abstract
Mosquito-borne diseases (MBDs), including those caused by flaviviruses, remain human health problems for developing and urbanizing economies. This cross-sectional study examined risks of flavivirus exposure through a survey regarding knowledge and practices of pig farmers, and serological analysis of pigs in peri-urban and [...] Read more.
Mosquito-borne diseases (MBDs), including those caused by flaviviruses, remain human health problems for developing and urbanizing economies. This cross-sectional study examined risks of flavivirus exposure through a survey regarding knowledge and practices of pig farmers, and serological analysis of pigs in peri-urban and suburban Hanoi city. A total of 636 pig sera from 179 pig farms in 4 districts, namely, Chuong My, Dan Phuong, Ha Dong, and Bac Tu Liem, were analyzed by a competitive ELISA designed for flavivirus antibody detection. The results indicated a low level of awareness about MBDs among pig farmers, and a high seroprevalence in pigs at 88.5% (95%CI = 85.8–90.9%). Moreover, common practices of pig owners to prevent mosquitoes at home and farm did not show a significant reduction in flavivirus exposure in pigs. At animal level, significant associations between seropositive pigs and the farms with more than 60 pigs, and the district location were found. Farm-level multivariable analysis did not identify significant risk factors for flavivirus exposure. The study suggests that improving awareness of pig owners about MBDs in Hanoi city may be warranted to reduce the risk for MBD flavivirus infections in both humans and pigs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Zoonoses in Tropical Countries)
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Article
Abattoir-Based Serological Surveillance and Spatial Risk Analysis of Foot-and-Mouth Disease, Brucellosis, and Q Fever in Lao PDR Large Ruminants
Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2022, 7(5), 78; https://doi.org/10.3390/tropicalmed7050078 - 18 May 2022
Viewed by 626
Abstract
A national animal disease surveillance network initiated by the Lao PDR government is adopted and reinforced by a joint research project between the National Animal Health Laboratory (NAHL), the Department of Livestock and Fisheries (DLF), and the Mahidol Oxford Tropical Medicine Research Unit [...] Read more.
A national animal disease surveillance network initiated by the Lao PDR government is adopted and reinforced by a joint research project between the National Animal Health Laboratory (NAHL), the Department of Livestock and Fisheries (DLF), and the Mahidol Oxford Tropical Medicine Research Unit (MORU). The network is strengthened by staff training and practical exercises and is utilised to provide zoonotic or high-impact disease information on a national scale. Between January and December 2020, large ruminant samples are collected monthly from 18 abattoirs, one in each province, by provincial and district agriculture and forestry officers. The surveillance network collected a total of 4247 serum samples (1316 buffaloes and 2931 cattle) over this period. Samples are tested for antibodies against Brucella spp., Coxiella burnetii (Q fever) and Foot-and-Mouth Disease Non-Structural Protein (FMD NSP) using commercial ELISA kits and the Rose Bengal test. Seroprevalences of Q fever and brucellosis in large ruminants are low at 1.7% (95% CI: 1.3, 2.1) and 0.7% (95% CI: 0.5, 1.0) respectively, while for FMD NSP it is 50.5% (95% CI: 49.0, 52.0). Univariate analyses show differences in seroprevalences of Q fever between destination (abattoir) province (p-value = 0.005), province of origin (p-value = 0.005), animal type (buffalo or cattle) (p-value = 0.0008), and collection month (p-value = 3.4 × 10−6). Similar to Q fever, seroprevalences of brucellosis were significantly different for destination province (p-value < 0.00001), province of origin (p-value < 0.00001), animal type (p-value = 9.9 × 10−5) and collection month (p-value < 0.00001), plus body condition score (p-value = 0.003), and age (p-value = 0.007). Additionally, risk factors of the FMD NSP dataset include the destination province (p-value < 0.00001), province of origin (p-value < 0.00001), sex (p-value = 7.97 × 10−8), age (p-value = 0.009), collection date (p-value < 0.00001), and collection month (p-value < 0.00001). Spatial analyses revealed that there is no spatial correlation of FMD NSP seropositive animals. High-risk areas for Q fever and brucellosis are identified by spatial analyses. Further investigation of the higher risk areas would provide a better epidemiological understanding of both diseases in Lao PDR. In conclusion, the abattoir serological survey provides useful information about disease exposure and potential risk factors. The network is a good base for field and laboratory staff training in practical technical skills. However, the sustainability of such a surveillance activity is relatively low without an external source of funding, given the operational costs and insufficient government budget. The cost-effectiveness of the abattoir survey could be increased by targeting hotspot areas, reducing fixed costs, and extending the focus to cover more diseases. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Infectious Diseases)
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Article
Rickettsial Infections Are Neglected Causes of Acute Febrile Illness in Teluk Intan, Peninsular Malaysia
Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2022, 7(5), 77; https://doi.org/10.3390/tropicalmed7050077 - 18 May 2022
Viewed by 653
Abstract
Rickettsial infections are among the leading etiologies of acute febrile illness in Southeast Asia. However, recent data from Malaysia are limited. This prospective study was conducted in Teluk Intan, Peninsular Malaysia, during January to December 2016. We recruited 309 hospitalized adult patients with [...] Read more.
Rickettsial infections are among the leading etiologies of acute febrile illness in Southeast Asia. However, recent data from Malaysia are limited. This prospective study was conducted in Teluk Intan, Peninsular Malaysia, during January to December 2016. We recruited 309 hospitalized adult patients with acute febrile illness. Clinical and biochemistry data were obtained, and patients were stratified into mild and severe infections based on the sepsis-related organ failure (qSOFA) scoring system. Diagnostic assays including blood cultures, real-time PCR, and serology (IFA and MAT) were performed. In this study, pathogens were identified in 214 (69%) patients, of which 199 (93%) patients had a single etiology, and 15 (5%) patients had >1 etiologies. The top three causes of febrile illness requiring hospitalization in this Malaysian study were leptospirosis (68 (32%)), dengue (58 (27%)), and rickettsioses (42 (19%)). Fifty-five (18%) patients presented with severe disease with a qSOFA score of ≥2. Mortality was documented in 38 (12%) patients, with the highest seen in leptospirosis (16 (42%)) followed by rickettsiosis (4 (11%)). While the significance of leptospirosis and dengue are recognized, the impact of rickettsial infections in Peninsular Malaysia remains under appreciated. Management guidelines for in-patient care with acute febrile illness in Peninsular Malaysia are needed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Past and Present Threat of Rickettsial Diseases (Volume II))
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Article
Diagnosing Human Fascioliasis Using ELISA Immunoassays at a Tertiary Referral Hospital in Hanoi: A Cross-Sectional Study
Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2022, 7(5), 76; https://doi.org/10.3390/tropicalmed7050076 - 17 May 2022
Viewed by 559
Abstract
Infections with the zoonotic liver flukes Fasciola gigantica and Fasciola hepatica may result in severe disease in humans. In Vietnam, an emergence of fascioliasis cases has been observed from the late 1990s onwards. Various diagnostic tools are used in the country, but the [...] Read more.
Infections with the zoonotic liver flukes Fasciola gigantica and Fasciola hepatica may result in severe disease in humans. In Vietnam, an emergence of fascioliasis cases has been observed from the late 1990s onwards. Various diagnostic tools are used in the country, but the agreement between these tools has not been critically evaluated. We aimed to describe the clinical presentation and diagnostic outcomes in fascioliasis patients in Vietnam. A retrospective, cross-sectional study was conducted on the medical records of a group of 145 patients diagnosed with fascioliasis at a tertiary referral hospital in Hanoi. Based on the review, sociodemographic background and clinical presentation were recorded. These patients all received standard routine serologic tests, including internal antibody (Ab)-ELISA, an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), and commercial coproantigen (cAg)-ELISA. The majority of cases were between 30 and 59 years old (68.3%), and about half of them were male (51.0%). Upper quadrant and epigastric pain were the most commonly reported symptoms (61.4% and 35.2%, respectively). All but one patient had liver lesions upon ultrasound examination (99.3%), and eosinophilia was present in most of the patients (89.7%). A high number of patients were positive in the in-house and the commercial Ab-ELISA (95.9% and 87.4%, respectively), yet only a slight agreement was observed between the two tests (kappa coefficient, 0.06). A further 47.4% of cases were positive for the commercial cAg-ELISA, whereas stool microscopy indicated the presence of Fasciola spp. eggs in 25.7% of patients. The current study emphasizes the challenges related to the diagnosis of human fascioliasis in Vietnam. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Trematode Infections in the Asian Perspective)
Article
Antimicrobial Prescribing Patterns in Patients with COVID-19 in Russian Multi-Field Hospitals in 2021: Results of the Global-PPS Project
Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2022, 7(5), 75; https://doi.org/10.3390/tropicalmed7050075 - 16 May 2022
Viewed by 710
Abstract
The COVID-19 pandemic is a global public health challenge with understudied effects on antimicrobial usage. We aimed to analyze antimicrobial prescribing patterns in COVID-19 patients in Russian multi-field hospitals by means of the Global-PPS Project developed by the University of Antwerp. Out of [...] Read more.
The COVID-19 pandemic is a global public health challenge with understudied effects on antimicrobial usage. We aimed to analyze antimicrobial prescribing patterns in COVID-19 patients in Russian multi-field hospitals by means of the Global-PPS Project developed by the University of Antwerp. Out of 999 patients in COVID-19 wards in six hospitals surveyed in 2021, 51.3% received antimicrobials (79% in intensive care, 47.5% in medical wards). Systemic antivirals and antibiotics were prescribed to 31% and 35.1% of patients, respectively, and a combination of both to 14.1% of patients. The top antivirals administered were favipiravir (65%), remdesivir (19.2%), and umifenovir (15.8%); the top antibiotics were ceftriaxone (29.7%), levofloxacin (18%), and cefoperazone/sulbactam (10.4%). The vast majority of antibiotics was prescribed for treatment of pneumonia or COVID-19 infection (59.3% and 25.1%, respectively). Treatment was based on biomarker data in 42.7% of patients but was targeted only in 29.6% (6.7% for antibiotics). The rate of non-compliance with guidelines reached 16.6%. Antimicrobial prescribing patterns varied considerably in COVID-19 wards in Russian hospitals with groundlessly high rates of systemic antibiotics. Antimicrobial usage surveillance and stewardship should be applied to inpatient care during the COVID-19 pandemic. Full article
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Article
Understanding the Association between PrEP Stigma and PrEP Cascade Moderated by the Intensity of HIV Testing
Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2022, 7(5), 74; https://doi.org/10.3390/tropicalmed7050074 - 16 May 2022
Viewed by 524
Abstract
(1) Background: In the U.S., men who have sex with men (MSM) account for the majority of new HIV infections. On the other hand, pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) is an effective strategy to curb HIV transmission, but it is widely underutilized. It is unknown [...] Read more.
(1) Background: In the U.S., men who have sex with men (MSM) account for the majority of new HIV infections. On the other hand, pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) is an effective strategy to curb HIV transmission, but it is widely underutilized. It is unknown how stigma affects PrEP care in the context of other HIV prevention strategies. (2) Methods: We included a total of 318 MSM in the current analysis. We employed bivariate and multivariable analyses to assess the association between PrEP stigma and PrEP cascade while controlling for potential confounders on each specific pathway. We further used a series of moderation analyses based upon the intensity of HIV testing within different timeframes to assess the association between PrEP stigma and PrEP cascade. (3) Results: Compared with MSM who used PrEP, those who never used PrEP reported higher internalized and vicarious PrEP stigma. Internalized PrEP stigma has significantly reduced the likelihood of PrEP willingness and PrEP uptake among this group. The trend analysis showed significant trend patterns across different frequencies of HIV testing. (4) Conclusions: A structural-level reform is urgently needed to turn the HIV service encounters into opportunities to facilitate and optimize the PrEP cascade among this group who may benefit from PrEP use. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue HIV Testing, Prevention and Care Cascade)
Article
Needs Assessment of Southeastern United States Vector Control Agencies: Capacity Improvement Is Greatly Needed to Prevent the Next Vector-Borne Disease Outbreak
Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2022, 7(5), 73; https://doi.org/10.3390/tropicalmed7050073 - 13 May 2022
Viewed by 608
Abstract
A national 2017 vector control capacity survey was conducted to assess the United States’ (U.S.’s) ability to prevent emerging vector-borne disease. Since that survey, the southeastern U.S. has experienced continued autochthonous exotic vector-borne disease transmission and establishment of invasive vector species. To understand [...] Read more.
A national 2017 vector control capacity survey was conducted to assess the United States’ (U.S.’s) ability to prevent emerging vector-borne disease. Since that survey, the southeastern U.S. has experienced continued autochthonous exotic vector-borne disease transmission and establishment of invasive vector species. To understand the current gaps in control programs and establish a baseline to evaluate future vector control efforts for this vulnerable region, a focused needs assessment survey was conducted in early 2020. The southeastern U.S. region was targeted, as this region has a high probability of novel vector-borne disease introduction. Paper copies delivered in handwritten envelopes and electronic copies of the survey were delivered to 386 unique contacts, and 150 returned surveys were received, corresponding to a 39% response rate. Overall, the survey found vector control programs serving areas with over 100,000 residents and those affiliated with public health departments had more core capabilities compared to smaller programs and those not affiliated with public health departments. Furthermore, the majority of vector control programs in this region do not routinely monitor for pesticide resistance. Taken as a whole, these results suggest that the majority of the southeastern U.S. is vulnerable to vector-borne disease outbreaks. Results from this survey raise attention to the critical need of providing increased resources to bring all vector control programs to a competent level, ensuring that public health is protected from the threat of vector-borne disease. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Emerging Vector-Borne Diseases and Public Health Challenges)
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Systematic Review
Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis on the Infection Rates of Schistosome Transmitting Snails in Southern Africa
Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2022, 7(5), 72; https://doi.org/10.3390/tropicalmed7050072 - 13 May 2022
Viewed by 594
Abstract
Efforts to interrupt and eliminate schistosomiasis as a public health problem have increased in several Southern African countries. A systematic review was carried out on the infection rates of snails that cause schistosomiasis in humans. The searches were conducted in PubMed, Web of [...] Read more.
Efforts to interrupt and eliminate schistosomiasis as a public health problem have increased in several Southern African countries. A systematic review was carried out on the infection rates of snails that cause schistosomiasis in humans. The searches were conducted in PubMed, Web of Science, and Scopus databases, using the PRISMA guidelines from inception to 24 February 2022. The study quality was assessed by using the Joanna Briggs Institute prevalence critical appraisal checklist. Pooled infection rates were estimated by using an inverse variance heterogeneity model, while heterogeneity was determined by using Cochran’s Q test and Higgins i2 statistics. A total of 572 articles were screened, but only 28 studies were eligible for inclusion based on predetermined criteria. In the selected studies, 82,471 Bulinus spp. and 16,784 Biomphalaria spp. snails were screened for cercariae. The pooled infectivity of schistosome intermediate host snails, Biomphalaria spp., and Bulinus spp. were 1%, 2%, and 1%, respectively. Snail infection rates were higher in the 1900s compared to the 2000s. A Luis Furuya–Kanamori index of 3.16 indicated publication bias, and a high level of heterogeneity was observed. Although snail infectivity in Southern Africa is relatively low, it falls within the interval of common snail infection rates, thus indicating the need for suitable snail control programs that could interrupt transmission and achieve elimination. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Neglected and Emerging Tropical Diseases)
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Article
Serum Levels of Ficolin-3 and Mannose-Binding Lectin in Patients with Leprosy and Their Family Contacts in a Hyperendemic Region in Northeastern Brazil
Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2022, 7(5), 71; https://doi.org/10.3390/tropicalmed7050071 - 10 May 2022
Viewed by 656
Abstract
The present study aimed at analyzing the serum levels of mannose-binding lectin (MBL) and ficolin-3 (FCN3) in leprosy patients and their healthy family contacts in a hyperendemic region in northeastern Brazil. A cross-sectional study was carried out with 90 patients who had been [...] Read more.
The present study aimed at analyzing the serum levels of mannose-binding lectin (MBL) and ficolin-3 (FCN3) in leprosy patients and their healthy family contacts in a hyperendemic region in northeastern Brazil. A cross-sectional study was carried out with 90 patients who had been diagnosed with leprosy and 79 healthy family contacts. Serum levels of the MBL and FCN3 proteins were measured using the immunofluorometric assay (ELISA). Clinical information was determined from the patients’ charts. It was observed that the leprosy patients were more likely to be male (OR = 2.17; p = 0.01) and younger than fifteen years of age (OR = 2.01; p = 0.03) when compared to the family contacts. Those under 15 years of age had higher levels of MBL (4455 ng/mL) than those over 15 years of age (2342 ng/mL; p = 0.018). Higher FCN3 levels were identified in patients with indeterminate leprosy (41.9 µg/mL) compared to those with the lepromatous form (34.3 µg/mL; p = 0.033) and in those with no physical disabilities (38.1 µg/mL) compared to those with some disability (p = 0.031). Higher FCN3 levels were also observed in the group of patients without leprosy reactions (37.4 µg/mL) compared to those with type 1 (33.7 µg/mL) and type 2 (36.1 µg/mL) reactions. The MBL levels were higher in children under 15 years of age than they were in adults. It was evidenced that higher FCN3 serum levels were associated with early and transient clinical forms and lower expression in severe forms of leprosy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Neglected and Emerging Tropical Diseases)
Case Report
A Case Report of Secondary Syphilis Co-Infected with Measles: A Diagnostic Dilemma with Fever and Rash
Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2022, 7(5), 70; https://doi.org/10.3390/tropicalmed7050070 - 09 May 2022
Viewed by 887
Abstract
Fever and rash as manifestations of infection by microorganisms are collectively known as febrile exanthem. Since viruses are more frequently associated with fever and rash, these symptoms are thus impetuously termed viral exanthem. However, bacteria represent a frequently overlooked infectious etiology causing rash [...] Read more.
Fever and rash as manifestations of infection by microorganisms are collectively known as febrile exanthem. Since viruses are more frequently associated with fever and rash, these symptoms are thus impetuously termed viral exanthem. However, bacteria represent a frequently overlooked infectious etiology causing rash in humans. In addition, certain microbes may exhibit pathognomonic features that erupt during illness and facilitate clinical diagnosis. Conversely, coinfections often obscure the clinical characteristics of the primary disease and further challenge clinicians attempting to reach a diagnosis. We retrospectively looked at de-identified clinical data of a patient who presented to the Hospital for Tropical Diseases in Bangkok in July 2019 with complaints of fever and rash. The case involved a 35-year-old who presented with a 3-day history of fever, respiratory symptoms, myalgia, conjunctivitis, diarrhea, and a generalized maculopapular rash. On examination, the patient was febrile, tachycardic, and tachypneic, with a mean arterial pressure of 95 mmHg. A differential white blood cell count showed: leukocytes, 5800/µL; neutrophils, 4408/µL; lymphocytes, 406/µL; and platelets, 155,000/µL. Striking findings involving the integumentary system included Koplik’s spots and generalized maculopapular rash. Further serology revealed positive immunoglobulin (Ig)M and IgG for both measles and rubella virus, including reactive serology for Treponema pallidum. Here we describe the clinical course and management of this patient. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Infectious Diseases)
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Editorial
Eliminating Cholera Incidence and Mortality: Unfulfilled Tasks
Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2022, 7(5), 69; https://doi.org/10.3390/tropicalmed7050069 - 09 May 2022
Viewed by 589
Abstract
Impressive advances have been made in new cholera vaccine development and vaccination control strategies [...] Full article
Article
Dengue and COVID-19: Managing Undifferentiated Febrile Illness during a “Twindemic”
Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2022, 7(5), 68; https://doi.org/10.3390/tropicalmed7050068 - 07 May 2022
Viewed by 832
Abstract
Background: During the COVID-19 pandemic, distinguishing dengue from COVID-19 in endemic areas can be difficult, as both may present as undifferentiated febrile illness. COVID-19 cases may also present with false-positive dengue serology. Hospitalisation protocols for managing undifferentiated febrile illness are essential in mitigating [...] Read more.
Background: During the COVID-19 pandemic, distinguishing dengue from COVID-19 in endemic areas can be difficult, as both may present as undifferentiated febrile illness. COVID-19 cases may also present with false-positive dengue serology. Hospitalisation protocols for managing undifferentiated febrile illness are essential in mitigating the risk from both COVID-19 and dengue. Methods: At a tertiary hospital contending with COVID-19 during a dengue epidemic, a triage strategy of routine COVID-19 testing for febrile patients with viral prodromes was used. All febrile patients with viral prodromes and no epidemiologic risk for COVID-19 were first admitted to a designated ward for COVID-19 testing, from January 2020 to December 2021. Results: A total of 6103 cases of COVID-19 and 1251 cases of dengue were managed at our institution, comprising a total of 3.9% (6103/155,452) and 0.8% (1251/155,452) of admissions, respectively. A surge in dengue hospitalisations in mid-2020 corresponded closely with the imposition of a community-wide lockdown. A total of 23 cases of PCR-proven COVID-19 infection with positive dengue serology were identified, of whom only two were true co-infections; both had been appropriately isolated upon admission. Average length-of-stay for dengue cases initially admitted to isolation during the pandemic was 8.35 days (S.D. = 6.53), compared with 6.91 days (S.D. = 8.61) for cases admitted outside isolation (1.44 days, 95%CI = 0.58–2.30, p = 0.001). Pre-pandemic, only 1.6% (9/580) of dengue cases were admitted initially to isolation-areas; in contrast, during the pandemic period, 66.6% (833/1251) of dengue cases were initially admitted to isolation-areas while awaiting the results of SARS-CoV-2 testing. Conclusions: During successive COVID-19 pandemic waves in a dengue-endemic country, coinfection with dengue and COVID-19 was uncommon. Routine COVID-19 testing for febrile patients with viral prodromes mitigated the potential infection-prevention risk from COVID-19 cases, albeit with an increased length-of-stay for dengue hospitalizations admitted initially to isolation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID-19: Current Status and Future Prospects)
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Perspective
Oral Rehydration Salts, Cholera, and the Unfinished Urban Health Agenda
Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2022, 7(5), 67; https://doi.org/10.3390/tropicalmed7050067 - 29 Apr 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1240
Abstract
Cholera has played an outsized role in the history of how cities have transformed from the victims of disease into great disease conquerors. Yet the current burden of cholera and diarrheal diseases in the fast-urbanizing areas of low-income nations shows the many ways [...] Read more.
Cholera has played an outsized role in the history of how cities have transformed from the victims of disease into great disease conquerors. Yet the current burden of cholera and diarrheal diseases in the fast-urbanizing areas of low-income nations shows the many ways in which the urban health agenda remains unfinished and must continue to evolve. Full article
Article
Humoral Immune Response Induced by the BBIBP-CorV Vaccine (Sinopharm) in Healthcare Workers: A Cohort Study
Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2022, 7(5), 66; https://doi.org/10.3390/tropicalmed7050066 - 24 Apr 2022
Viewed by 1100
Abstract
Insufficient data have been reported about the effect of the inactivated SARS-CoV-2 vaccine (BBIBP-CorV) on the humoral response through time in healthcare workers (HCW). This retrospective cohort studied the information of 252 HCW from a private laboratory, comparing the antibody-mediated response provoked by [...] Read more.
Insufficient data have been reported about the effect of the inactivated SARS-CoV-2 vaccine (BBIBP-CorV) on the humoral response through time in healthcare workers (HCW). This retrospective cohort studied the information of 252 HCW from a private laboratory, comparing the antibody-mediated response provoked by BBIBP-CorV between HCW previously infected with SARS-CoV-2 (PI) and not previously infected (NPI), employing the Elecsys® anti-SARS-CoV-2 S and the cPass™ SARS-CoV-2 Neutralization Antibody Detection kit at intervals of 21, 90, and 180 days after vaccination. The presence of neutralizing antibodies in HCW 21 days after full vaccination was 100% in PI and 91.60% in NPI. We observed a progressive decrease in antibody levels over time in both groups. Comparing HCW PI with NPI, PI had a 10.9, 14.3, and 8.6-fold higher antibody titer with the Elecsys® anti-SARS-CoV-2 S at 21 (p < 0.001), 90 (p< 0.001) and 180 days (p < 0.001) respectively, compared to NPI. Using the percent of signal inhibition (PSI) of the antibody neutralization cPass™, HCW PI showed a level of 1.3, 2.0, and 3.1 times more antibodies, at 21 (p < 0.001), 90 (p < 0.001), and 180 days (p < 0.001) respectively, compared to NPI. We determined a progressive decrease in humoral immunity over time, particularly higher in those NPI. Full article
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Article
Time Trend Analysis of Tuberculosis Treatment While Using Digital Adherence Technologies—An Individual Patient Data Meta-Analysis of Eleven Projects across Ten High Tuberculosis-Burden Countries
Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2022, 7(5), 65; https://doi.org/10.3390/tropicalmed7050065 - 22 Apr 2022
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Abstract
Worldwide, non-adherence to tuberculosis (TB) treatment is problematic. Digital adherence technologies (DATs) offer a person-centered approach to support and monitor treatment. We explored adherence over time while using DATs. We conducted a meta-analysis on anonymized longitudinal adherence data for drug-susceptible (DS) TB ( [...] Read more.
Worldwide, non-adherence to tuberculosis (TB) treatment is problematic. Digital adherence technologies (DATs) offer a person-centered approach to support and monitor treatment. We explored adherence over time while using DATs. We conducted a meta-analysis on anonymized longitudinal adherence data for drug-susceptible (DS) TB (n = 4515) and drug-resistant (DR) TB (n = 473) populations from 11 DAT projects. Using Tobit regression, we assessed adherence for six months of treatment across sex, age, project enrolment phase, DAT-type, health care facility (HCF), and project. We found that DATs recorded high levels of adherence throughout treatment: 80% to 71% of DS-TB patients had ≥90% adherence in month 1 and 6, respectively, and 73% to 75% for DR-TB patients. Adherence increased between month 1 and 2 (DS-TB and DR-TB populations), then decreased (DS-TB). Males displayed lower adherence and steeper decreases than females (DS-TB). DS-TB patients aged 15–34 years compared to those >50 years displayed steeper decreases. Adherence was correlated within HCFs and differed between projects. TB treatment adherence decreased over time and differed between subgroups, suggesting that over time, some patients are at risk for non-adherence. The real-time monitoring of medication adherence using DATs provides opportunities for health care workers to identify patients who need greater levels of adherence support. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Tools and Approaches to End TB)
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2.5 Million Annual Deaths—Are Neonates in Low- and Middle-Income Countries Too Small to Be Seen? A Bottom-Up Overview on Neonatal Morbi-Mortality
Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2022, 7(5), 64; https://doi.org/10.3390/tropicalmed7050064 - 21 Apr 2022
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Abstract
(1) Background: Every year, 2.5 million neonates die, mostly in low- and middle-income countries (LMIC), in total disregard of their fundamental human rights. Many of these deaths are preventable. For decades, the leading causes of neonatal mortality (prematurity, perinatal hypoxia, and infection) have [...] Read more.
(1) Background: Every year, 2.5 million neonates die, mostly in low- and middle-income countries (LMIC), in total disregard of their fundamental human rights. Many of these deaths are preventable. For decades, the leading causes of neonatal mortality (prematurity, perinatal hypoxia, and infection) have been known, so why does neonatal mortality fail to diminish effectively? A bottom-up understanding of neonatal morbi-mortality and neonatal rights is essential to achieve adequate progress, and so is increased visibility. (2) Methods: We performed an overview on the leading causes of neonatal morbi-mortality and analyzed the key interventions to reduce it with a bottom-up approach: from the clinician in the field to the policy maker. (3) Results and Conclusions: Overall, more than half of neonatal deaths in LMIC are avoidable through established and well-known cost-effective interventions, good quality antenatal and intrapartum care, neonatal resuscitation, thermal care, nasal CPAP, infection control and prevention, and antibiotic stewardship. Implementing these requires education and training, particularly at the bottom of the healthcare pyramid, and advocacy at the highest levels of government for health policies supporting better newborn care. Moreover, to plan and follow interventions, better-quality data are paramount. For healthcare developments and improvement, neonates must be acknowledged as humans entitled to rights and freedoms, as stipulated by international law. Most importantly, they deserve more respectful care. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Neglected Diseases and Human Rights)
Correction
Correction: Malik et al. Integrated Tuberculosis and COVID-19 Activities in Karachi and Tuberculosis Case Notifications. Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2022, 7, 12
Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2022, 7(5), 63; https://doi.org/10.3390/tropicalmed7050063 - 21 Apr 2022
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Abstract
The authors wish to revise the second citation of reference [26] to [27] in the original article main text [...] Full article
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