Burden of typhoid fever in Sulaimania, Iraqi Kurdistan


Jonathan Dworkincorrespondenceemail, Rebeen Saeed, Hawar Mykhan, Shwan Kanan, Dlawer Farhad, Kocher Omer Ali, Runak Hama Kareem Abdulwahab, John Palardy, Marguerite A. Neill


Background: Typhoid fever imposes a high disease burden worldwide, but resource limitations mean that the burden of typhoid fever in many countries is poorly understood.

Methods: The authors conducted a prospective surveillance study at the adult and pediatric teaching hospitals in Sulaimania, Iraqi Kurdistan. All patients presenting with an undifferentiated febrile illness consistent with typhoid were eligible for enrollment. Enrolled patients had blood cultures and Brucella serologies performed. Incidence was calculated with reference to census data.

Results: Both typhoid fever and brucellosis were common, and the incidence of typhoid fever was 21 cases/100 000 patient-years. Classic disease symptoms were uncommonly observed.

Discussion: Cost-effective surveillance projects to calculate disease burden of typhoid fever are practical and replicable. Typhoid has successfully adapted to the healthcare environment in Sulaimania. Additional work in the region should focus on antibiotic resistance and other enteric pathogens such as Brucella spp.


Click here to view the article.