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Influenza-associated respiratory illness among five cohorts of pregnant women and their young infants (0-6 months), Bangladesh, 2013-2017
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  • Zubair Akhtar,
  • Probir Ghosh,
  • Mejbah Bhuiyan,
  • Katherine Sturm-Ramirez,
  • Mohammed Rahman,
  • Md. Howlader,
  • Fahmida Chowdury,
  • Fatimah Dawood,
  • Angela Iuliano
Zubair Akhtar
International Centre for Diarrhoeal Disease Research Bangladesh

Corresponding Author:[email protected]

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Probir Ghosh
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Mejbah Bhuiyan
GSK Vaccines SRL
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Katherine Sturm-Ramirez
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Mohammed Rahman
International Centre of Diarrhoeal Disease Research, Bangladesh (icddr,b)
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Md. Howlader
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Fahmida Chowdury
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Fatimah Dawood
Centres for Disease Control and Prevention
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Angela Iuliano
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Pregnant women with their infants are considered at higher risk for influenza-associated complications, and the WHO recommends influenza vaccination during pregnancy to protect them, including their infants (0-6 months). There are limited data on the influenza burden among pregnant women and their infants (0-6 months), and there is no routine influenza vaccination in Bangladesh. Five annual cohorts (2013-2017) of pregnant women were enrolled from 8 sub-districts of Bangladesh before the influenza season (May-September); contacted weekly to identify new onset of influenza-like illness (ILI) (subjective or measured fever and cough) and acute respiratory illness (ARI) (at least two of: cough, rhinorrhea, or difficulty breathing) among their infants from birth to 6 months of age. We collected nasopharyngeal swabs from ILI and ARI cases, tested by rRT-PCR for influenza virus (including types and subtypes) and estimated influenza incidence (95% CI) /10,000 pregnancy-months or infant-months, respectively. We enrolled 9,020 pregnant women, followed for 26,709 pregnancy-months and detected 1,241 ILI episodes. We also followed 8,963 infants for 51,518 infant-months and identified 5,116 ARI episodes. Influenza positivity was 23% for ILI and 3% for ARI cases. The overall incidence (2013-2017) of influenza among pregnant women was 158.5/10,000 pregnancy-months (95% CI: 141.4-177.6), and that among infants was 21.9/10,000 infant-months (95% CI: 18.2-26.5). Although the data was collected more than five years ago, as the only baseline data, our findings illustrate evidence of influenza burden among pregnant women and infants (0-6 months) which may support preventive policy decisions in Bangladesh.
04 Mar 2023Submitted to Influenza and other respiratory viruses
07 Mar 2023Submission Checks Completed
07 Mar 2023Assigned to Editor
16 Mar 2023Reviewer(s) Assigned
15 Apr 2023Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending
17 Apr 2023Editorial Decision: Revise Major
15 Jun 20231st Revision Received
23 Jun 2023Submission Checks Completed
23 Jun 2023Assigned to Editor
29 Jun 2023Editorial Decision: Accept