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August 1978

Spread of Haemophilus influenzae: Secondary Illness in Household Contacts of Patients With H influenzae Meningitis

Author Affiliations

From the Bacterial Diseases Division (Drs Filice and Fraser) and the Field Services Division (Drs Andrews and Hudgins), Bureau of Epidemiology, Center for Disease Control, Public Health Service, US Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, Atlanta, and the Minnesota Department of Health (Dr Andrews), and the Rhode Island Department of Health (Dr Hudgins).

Am J Dis Child. 1978;132(8):757-759. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1978.02120330029006

• To determine the risk of severe secondary illness in household contacts of patients with Haemophilus influenzae meningitis, telephone interviews were conducted with contacts of patients with reported cases. Four probable or proved secondary cases of severe disease were identified for a secondary attack rate of 0.4%. The secondary attack rate for household contacts of patients 2 years of age and younger was 4.9%. Until safe, effective prophylactic measures become available, physicians should explain to parents that any person who becomes ill in the month after a household case of H influenzae meningitis should be brought to the attention of a physician for appropriate evaluation and treatment.

(Am J Dis Child 132:757-759, 1978)

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