[Skip to Content]
[Skip to Content Landing]
Article
February 7, 1959

RECURRENCE OF ASIAN VARIANT INFLUENZA IN THE FAR EAST: REPORT OF 1958 EPIDEMIC IN MARINE CORPS ON OKINAWA

Author Affiliations

Taipei, Taiwan (Formosa); U. S. N.

From the U. S. Naval Medical Research Unit No. 2 (Drs. Grayston and Wang) and the Preventive Medicine Section, Third Marine Division (Chief Pierce). Dr. Grayston is Assistant Professor of Medicine, University of Chicago.

JAMA. 1959;169(6):577-579. doi:10.1001/jama.1959.03000230033007
Abstract

An outbreak of influenza occurred in August, 1958, among U. S. Marines stationed on Okinawa. The causative virus was studied by standard methods in throat swab specimens collected from 39 of the patients within 24 hours after onset, and a detailed vaccination history was obtained from each patient. Most of the men were afebrile within 24 hours, none had complications, and all were returned to duty after five days. The epidemic had some unusual features, and its source was not discovered, but clinically the cases closely resembled those observed in 1957, and the virus was clearly shown to be a member of the new Asian variant set of influenza A viruses. Almost all of these men had been vaccinated against the Asian variant strain not more than nine months before the epidemic. This epidemic in the Far East emphasized the possibility of a recurrent world-wide outbreak in the coming year.

×