Establishing a surveillance network for severe lower respiratory tract infections in Korean infants and young children

J. K. Chun, J. H. Lee, H. S. Kim, H. M. Cheong, K. S. Kim, C. Kang, D. S. Kim

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20 Citations (Scopus)


To reduce morbidity and mortality through integrated case management, a pilot study to detect respiratory viruses in patients with acute lower respiratory infections (ALRIs) was designed as part of a nationwide surveillance for this disease in Korea. The study population consisted of hospitalized patients under the age of 5 years with bronchiolitis, pneumonia, croup, or acute respiratory distress syndrome. A prospective 6-month study was performed. Two hundred and ninety-seven nasopharyngeal secretions were collected and multiplex reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reactions (RT-PCR)/polymerase chain reactions (PCR) were performed to detect respiratory viruses. If there were any positive RT-PCR/PCR results, viral cultures were proceeded for confirmation. Respiratory viruses were identified in 49.6% of 296 patients. The detection rates were as follows: respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) was the most commonly detected in 52.7% (87/165), human metapneumovirus (hMPV) in 15.8%, human corona virus (hCoV) in 5.5%, adenovirus in 9.7%, human bocavirus (hBoV) in 5.5%, parainfluenza virus (PIV) in 3.6%, rhinovirus (RV) in 4.2%, and the influenza virus in 3% of the patients with ALRIs. The consistent rate of positive results between RT-PCR and viral culture was 92% (105/114). Using our methods to detect viral causes seemed to be acceptable for the national surveillance of severe acute respiratory infections in infants and children.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)841-844
Number of pages4
JournalEuropean Journal of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2009 Jul

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Acknowledgments We would like to thank Dr. Dong-Won Kang who made the database program for this study, Dr. Dae Ryong Kang who provided helpful consultations for the study design, precious members of the Korean Society of Pediatric Infectious Disease who recommended their brilliant opinions, and all of the members of the International Health Care Center at Severance Hospital who supported us in this study. This study was supported by intramural grant from Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases


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