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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1942/6078

Title: The seroepidemiology of primary varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection in Flanders (Belgium)
Authors: Thiry, Nancy
Beutels, P.
Vranckx, Robert
Vandermeulen, Corinne
van der Wielen, Marie
van Damme, Pierre
Issue Date: 2002
Publisher: Springer
Citation: European journal of pediatrics, 161(11). p. 588-593
Abstract: The age-specific seroprevalence of varicellazoster virus (VZV) antibodies was assessed in a sample of the Flemish (Belgian) population. ELISA tests were used to analyse 1673 sera from subjects aged I to 44 years (October 1999 - April 2000). Chickenpox infections in Flanders appear to affect children at a younger age than in other European countries since 47.37% (95% CI: 37.33-57.41) is already immune at 2 years of age. For older age-groups, the prevalence is similar to that of most European countries: 80.19% (95% CI: 72.60-87.78) at 5 years, 92.52% (95% CI: 87.54-97.51) at 9 years and 100%greater than or equal to40 years. The accuracy of nonpositive recollections of varicella histories among Flemish 10 to 17-year olds was examined on the basis of a second (residual) serum bank. In this group, VZV seroprevalence was almost always 100% (or nearly 100%), irrespective of age, degree of reliability (negative or uncertain answers) or level of ascertainment (child personally or parents). The limited size of this second data set did not allow for an accurate assessment of the negative predictive value of such recollections. Conclusion: since varicella-zoster virus predominantly affects very small children and is generally perceived as benign, the required high coverage rate of a universal childhood varicella vaccination programme may be hard to attain. Adolescent strategies can minimise the population risks involved but the accuracy of non positive antecedents of chickenpox needs to be documented to assess the efficiency of such strategies.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1942/6078
DOI: 10.1007/s00431-002-1053-2
ISI #: 000179434900005
ISSN: 0340-6199
Category: A1
Type: Journal Contribution
Validation: ecoom, 2003
Appears in Collections: Research publications

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