Incidence Estimates of Acute Q Fever and Spotted Fever Group Rickettsioses, Kilimanjaro, Tanzania, from 2007 to 2008 and from 2012 to 2014.
Q fever and spotted fever group rickettsioses (SFGR) are common causes of severe febrile illness in northern Tanzania. Incidence estimates are needed to characterize the disease burden. Using hybrid surveillance-coupling case-finding at two referral hospitals and healthcare utilization data-we estimated the incidences of acute Q fever and SFGR in Moshi, Kilimanjaro, Tanzania, from 2007 to 2008 and from 2012 to 2014. Cases were defined as fever and a four-fold or greater increase in antibody titers of acute and convalescent paired sera according to the indirect immunofluorescence assay of Coxiella burnetii phase II antigen for acute Q fever and Rickettsia conorii (2007-2008) or Rickettsia africae (2012-2014) antigens for SFGR. Healthcare utilization data were used to adjust for underascertainment of cases by sentinel surveillance. For 2007 to 2008, among 589 febrile participants, 16 (4.7%) of 344 and 27 (8.8%) of 307 participants with paired serology had Q fever and SFGR, respectively. Adjusted annual incidence estimates of Q fever and SFGR were 80 (uncertainty range, 20-454) and 147 (uncertainty range, 52-645) per 100,000 persons, respectively. For 2012 to 2014, among 1,114 febrile participants, 52 (8.1%) and 57 (8.9%) of 641 participants with paired serology had Q fever and SFGR, respectively. Adjusted annual incidence estimates of Q fever and SFGR were 56 (uncertainty range, 24-163) and 75 (uncertainty range, 34-176) per 100,000 persons, respectively. We found substantial incidences of acute Q fever and SFGR in northern Tanzania during both study periods. To our knowledge, these are the first incidence estimates of either disease in sub-Saharan Africa. Our findings suggest that control measures for these infections warrant consideration.
Pisharody, S; Rubach, MP; Carugati, M; Nicholson, WL; Perniciaro, JL; Biggs, HM; Maze, MJ; Hertz, JT; Halliday, JEB; Allan, KJ; Mmbaga, BT; Saganda, W; Lwezaula, BF; Kazwala, RR; Cleaveland, S; Maro, VP; Crump, JA
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