Community Acquired Influenza Requiring Hospitalization: Vaccine Status Is Unrelated to Morbidity in Children With Cancer
ABSTRACT Community acquired influenza can be severe and there are few data regarding hospitalization for children with cancer and influenza. Association between prior vaccination and infection severity has not been studied, although vaccination is standard practice.
Patients with malignancy or prior stem cell transplant (SCT) were identified using a database of children with laboratory confirmed influenza (2000-2005). Other data collected included receipt of vaccine, absolute neutrophil count (ANC) and absolute lymphocyte count (ALC). These were compared with intensive care unit (ICU) stay, respiratory complications and hospital days.
There were 39 patients with laboratory-confirmed influenza with a median age of 6.9 years. Twenty-four (62%) were on cancer therapy at time of infection and 18 (46%) had received the influenza vaccination that season. Measures of immune status included ANC at time of infection (median 1,530 cells/microl; inter-quartile range, 315, 4347), presence of graft versus host disease 2 (5%) and steroid therapy 4 (10%) patients. All had a low ALC (median 448 cells/microl; IQR 189, 861). Respiratory complications occurred in 8 (20%), ICU admissions in 4 (10%) and death in 2 (5%) patients. Median hospital stay was 2 days. All ICU admissions occurred in unvaccinated patients (P = 0.1). Vaccine status, ANC (<1,000 cells/microl vs. >1,000) and ALC (<500 cells/microl vs. >500) were not associated with length of stay or respiratory complications.
Influenza infection can be severe in children with cancer and complications occur despite vaccination. Prospective evaluation of vaccine response is worthy of future study.
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ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Despite recommendations by Health Authorities, influenza immunization coverage remains low in children with chronic diseases. Different medical providers involved in the management of children with chronic conditions may affect the pattern of influenza vaccine recommendations and coverage. The likelihood of vaccination by type of provider in children with chronic conditions is poorly understood. Therefore, the objectives of this study were to analyze the pattern and the effect of recommendations for seasonal influenza immunization provided by different physician profiles to families of children with chronic diseases and to measure the frequency of immunization in the study population METHODS: We recruited children with chronic diseases aged 6 months--18 years who subsequently presented to specialty clinics for routine follow-up visits, during spring 2009, in three Italian Regions Families of children with chronic diseases were interviewed during routine visits at reference centers through a face-to-face interview. We analyzed the following immunization predictors: having received a recommendation toward influenza immunization by a health provider; child's sex and age; mothers and fathers' age; parental education and employment; underlying child's disease; number of contacts with health providers in the previous year. Influenza immunization coverage was calculated as the proportion of children who received at least one dose of seasonal influenza vaccine in the previous season. We calculated prevalence ratios and we used a generalized linear model with Poisson family, log link and robust error variance to assess the effect of socio-demographic variables, underlying diseases, and recommendations provided by physicians on influenza immunization. RESULTS: We enrolled 275 families of children with chronic diseases. Overall influenza coverage was 57.5%, with a low of 25% in children with neurological diseases and a high of 91.2% in those with cystic fibrosis. While 10.6% of children who did not receive any recommendation toward influenza immunization were immunized, among those who received a recommendation 87.5-94.7% did, depending on the health professional providing the recommendation. Receiving a recommendation by any provider is a strong predictor of immunization (PR = 8.5 95% CI 4.6;15.6) Most children received an immunization recommendation by a specialty (25.8%) or a family pediatrician (23.3%) and were immunized by a family pediatrician (58.7%) or a community vaccinator (55.2%). CONCLUSIONS: Receiving a specific recommendation by a physician is a strong determinant of being immunized against seasonal influenza in children with chronic diseases independently of other factors. Heterogeneity exists among children with different chronic diseases regarding influenza recommendation despite international guidelines. Increasing the frequency of appropriate recommendations toward influenza immunization by physicians is a single powerful intervention that may increase coverage in children with chronic conditions.BMC Public Health 11/2012; 12(1):984. DOI:10.1186/1471-2458-12-984 · 2.32 Impact FactorThis article is viewable in ResearchGate's enriched formatRG Format enables you to read in context with side-by-side figures, citations, and feedback from experts in your field.
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ABSTRACT: Influenza is a common respiratory pathogen. Its severity can be unpredictable, but people with chronic illness are at increased risk of severe infection, complications, and death from influenza. This review examines evidence to support various strategies to protect pediatric oncology patients from influenza-related morbidity. Influenza vaccination should be considered standard. Additional evidence-supported measures include antiviral treatment, antiviral prophylaxis, cohorting of patients, and hospital infection control measures. Data from other high-risk populations support the vaccination of family members, double-dose or high-dose vaccination, and the use of barrier methods. These measures have the potential to optimize patient outcomes because there will be fewer treatment interruptions for acute illness. These strategies can also protect patients from prolonged hospitalizations and morbidity related to influenza.The Oncologist 01/2013; DOI:10.1634/theoncologist.2012-0401 · 4.54 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Please cite this paper as: Kersun et al. (2012) A prospective study of chemotherapy immunologic effects and predictors of humoral influenza vaccine responses in a pediatric oncology cohort. Influenza and Other Respiratory Viruses DOI: 10.1111/irv.12058. Background: Pediatric oncology patients represent a cohort of individuals uniquely at risk of complications from influenza, yet less likely to respond to the vaccine. It is not yet clear how to best protect this vulnerable population. Methods: We performed a prospective analysis of 177 pediatric oncology patients to define the predictors of influenza vaccine responses. Each variable was examined over three time points and a repeated measure analysis was performed. Results: Patients with ALL vaccinated during induction phase had superior influenza vaccine responses than those subjects vaccinated during post-induction or maintenance phases (P = 0·0237). Higher aggregate HAI titer responses were associated with a higher baseline B-cell count (P = 0·0240), and higher CD4 and CD8 influenza-specific T-cell responses, suggesting prior antigen exposure is a significant contributor. The solid tumor cohort had equivalent responses during all time frames of chemotherapy. Discussion: The optimal protection from influenza of pediatric patients on chemotherapy should include vaccination, but it is clear that not all patients produce high titers of antibodies after vaccination. This study identified biomarkers that could be used to individualize vaccine approaches. Immunologic predictors might have a role in targeting resources, as B-cell counts predicted of vaccine responses among the patients with ALL.Influenza and Other Respiratory Viruses 11/2012; DOI:10.1111/irv.12058 · 1.47 Impact Factor