Household transmission of pandemic (H1N1) 2009, San Antonio, Texas, USA, April-May 2009

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1600 Clifton Rd NE, Mailstop C12, Atlanta, GA 30333, USA.
Emerging Infectious Diseases (Impact Factor: 6.75). 04/2010; 16(4):631-7. DOI: 10.3201/eid1604.091658
Source: PubMed


To assess household transmission of pandemic (H1N1) 2009 in San Antonio, Texas, USA, during April 15-May 8, 2009, we investigated 77 households. The index case-patient was defined as the household member with the earliest onset date of symptoms of acute respiratory infection (ARI), influenza-like illness (ILI), or laboratory-confirmed pandemic (H1N1) 2009. Median interval between illness onset in index and secondary case-patients was 4 days (range 1-9 days); the index case-patient was likely to be < or =18 years of age (p = 0.034). The secondary attack rate was 4% for pandemic (H1N1) 2009, 9% for ILI, and 13% for ARI. The secondary attack rate was highest for children <5 years of age (8%-19%) and lowest for adults > or =50 years of age (4%-12%). Early in the outbreak, household transmission primarily occurred from children to other household members and was lower than the transmission rate for seasonal influenza.

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    • "The overall crude household SAR was 5.7% in our study. Previous studies of household transmission have reported an overall SAR of 5%–24% for seasonal influenza [28], [31]–[33] and 4%–26% for pandemic A(H1N1)2009 [11], [12], [27], [34], [35]. It is difficult to compare this study with previous studies because the study designs are different. "
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    ABSTRACT: Knowledge of how influenza viruses spread in a community is important for planning and implementation of effective interventions, including social distancing measures. Households and schools are implicated as the major sites for influenza virus transmission. However, the overall picture of community transmission is not well defined during actual outbreaks. We conducted a community-based prospective cohort study to describe the transmission characteristics of influenza in Mongolia. A total of 5,655 residents in 1,343 households were included in this cohort study. An active search for cases of influenza-like illness (ILI) was performed between October 2010 and April 2011. Data collected during a community outbreak of influenza A(H3N2) were analyzed. Total 282 ILI cases occurred during this period, and 73% of the subjects were aged <15 years. The highest attack rate (20.4%) was in those aged 1-4 years, whereas the attack rate in those aged 5-9 years was 10.8%. Fifty-one secondary cases occurred among 900 household contacts from 43 households (43 index cases), giving an overall crude household secondary attack rate (SAR) of 5.7%. SAR was significantly higher in younger household contacts (relative risk for those aged <1 year: 9.90, 1-4 years: 5.59, and 5-9 years: 6.43). We analyzed the transmission patterns among households and a community and repeated transmissions were detected between households, preschools, and schools. Children aged 1-4 years played an important role in influenza transmission in households and in the community at large. Working-age adults were also a source of influenza in households, whereas elderly cases (aged ≥ 65 years) had no link with household transmission. Repeated transmissions between households, preschools, and schools were observed during an influenza A(H3N2) outbreak period in Mongolia, where subjects aged 1-4 years played an important role in influenza transmission.
    Full-text · Article · Mar 2012 · PLoS ONE
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    • "Only index patients were supposed to wear the masks, and mean age of index patients in the intervention arm was 25 years. Since young children and infants may play a more important role in the (household) transmission of influenza [23-25], it is possible that these factors may have led to a cumulative underestimation of the real effect of facemasks. "
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    ABSTRACT: Previous controlled studies on the effect of non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPI) - namely the use of facemasks and intensified hand hygiene - in preventing household transmission of influenza have not produced definitive results. We aimed to investigate efficacy, acceptability, and tolerability of NPI in households with influenza index patients. We conducted a cluster randomized controlled trial during the pandemic season 2009/10 and the ensuing influenza season 2010/11. We included households with an influenza positive index case in the absence of further respiratory illness within the preceding 14 days. Study arms were wearing a facemask and practicing intensified hand hygiene (MH group), wearing facemasks only (M group) and none of the two (control group). Main outcome measure was laboratory confirmed influenza infection in a household contact. We used daily questionnaires to examine adherence and tolerability of the interventions. We recruited 84 households (30 control, 26 M and 28 MH households) with 82, 69 and 67 household contacts, respectively. In 2009/10 all 41 index cases had a influenza A (H1N1) pdm09 infection, in 2010/11 24 had an A (H1N1) pdm09 and 20 had a B infection. The total secondary attack rate was 16% (35/218). In intention-to-treat analysis there was no statistically significant effect of the M and MH interventions on secondary infections. When analysing only households where intervention was implemented within 36 h after symptom onset of the index case, secondary infection in the pooled M and MH groups was significantly lower compared to the control group (adjusted odds ratio 0.16, 95% CI, 0.03-0.92). In a per-protocol analysis odds ratios were significantly reduced among participants of the M group (adjusted odds ratio, 0.30, 95% CI, 0.10-0.94). With the exception of MH index cases in 2010/11 adherence was good for adults and children, contacts and index cases. Results suggest that household transmission of influenza can be reduced by the use of NPI, such as facemasks and intensified hand hygiene, when implemented early and used diligently. Concerns about acceptability and tolerability of the interventions should not be a reason against their recommendation. The study was registered with (Identifier NCT00833885).
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    • "In the U.K., SARs of 18.9% for secondary contacts with ARI, 10.5% for contacts with ILI and 8.1% for contacts with laboratory confirmed pH1N1 were reported, with 50% of contacts reporting receipt of antiviral prophylaxis four days after onset of illness in the index case [30]. Additionally, two household transmission studies in New York City and San Antonio report comparable SARs (9% and 13%), although, uptake of antiviral prophylaxis in household contacts was low [25,24]. While all studies demonstrate significant reductions in transmission within households where antiviral prophylaxis was administered, the overall impact of these policies on transmission at a population level remains unknown. "
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    ABSTRACT: Understanding transmission dynamics of the pandemic influenza A (H1N1) virus in various exposure settings and determining whether transmissibility differed from seasonal influenza viruses was a priority for decision making on mitigation strategies at the beginning of the pandemic. The objective of this study was to estimate household secondary attack rates for pandemic influenza in a susceptible population where control measures had yet to be implemented. All Ontario local health units were invited to participate; seven health units volunteered. For all laboratory-confirmed cases reported between April 24 and June 18, 2009, participating health units performed contact tracing to detect secondary cases among household contacts. In total, 87 cases and 266 household contacts were included in this study. Secondary cases were defined as any household member with new onset of acute respiratory illness (fever or two or more respiratory symptoms) or influenza-like illness (fever plus one additional respiratory symptom). Attack rates were estimated using both case definitions. Secondary attack rates were estimated at 10.3% (95% CI 6.8-14.7) for secondary cases with influenza-like illness and 20.2% (95% CI 15.4-25.6) for secondary cases with acute respiratory illness. For both case definitions, attack rates were significantly higher in children under 16 years than adults (25.4% and 42.4% compared to 7.6% and 17.2%). The median time between symptom onset in the primary case and the secondary case was estimated at 3.0 days. Secondary attack rates for pandemic influenza A (H1N1) were comparable to seasonal influenza estimates suggesting similarities in transmission. High secondary attack rates in children provide additional support for increased susceptibility to infection.
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