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Lookup NU author(s): Professor Nicholas EmbletonORCiD,
Dr Janet Berrington
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Aim: Infection is an important cause of neonatal and infant mortality. We evaluated changes in infant deaths from infections from 1988 to 2008 in the North of England. Methods: We interrogated a population-based survey and reviewed infant deaths from infection. Proportional contribution to deaths, pathogens identified and risk factors were analysed. Results: Thirteen percentage of 4366 infant deaths from a population of 704 536 livebirths were infectious. The absolute numbers of infant deaths from infection fell over time but the proportion of deaths from infection increased (12.1%, 13.6% and 14.9%). Significantly preterm infants were increasingly represented in successive epochs (14%, 24% and 38%). Infant mortality rate (IMR) from meningococcus and Group B Streptococcus (GBS) fell in the latest epoch, but there was a corresponding increase from Escherichia coli and candida. Discussion: This large study shows that infections have become proportionately more important causes of death especially in very preterm infants. Recent significant reductions in death from meningococcus and GBS are likely to represent successful achievements of vaccination and antibiotic prophylactic policies. Increases in IMR from E. coli may relate to GBS prophylaxis and increases in candida to the increase from preterm populations. Further efforts to understand these changing patterns and develop additional prevention and treatment strategies and vaccines remain an urgent priority.
Author(s): Williams EJ, Embleton ND, Bythell M, Platt MPW, Berrington JE
Publication type: Article
Publication status: Published
Journal: Acta Paediatrica
Print publication date: 02/08/2013
ISSN (print): 0803-5253
ISSN (electronic): 1651-2227
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