Background: Human cytomegalovirus is a ubiquitous, large enveloped DNA β-herpesvirus that, like other herpesviruses, establishes lifelong latency following primary infection. It is the most frequent cause of congenital, neonatal and early postnatal infections with long lasting sequelae.
Aim: The aim of the present study was to assess the prevalence of cytomegalovirus among a cohort of newborns and 1-3-month-old children with neurological symptoms, physical retardation, prolonged jaundice, thrombocytopenic purpura and other disabilities.
Materials and methods: The study was a retrospective cross-sectional analysis of serological screening data for detection of specific anti-cytomegalovirus IgM and IgG in children from Northeastern Bulgaria.
Results: Between 2003 and 2015, average prevalences of 18.8% (95% CI: 15.4 to 22.2) for anti-CMV IgM antibodies (suggesting acute infection) and 84.7% (95% CI: 81.6 to 87.8) for anti-CMV IgG antibodies were measured in a total number of 517 samples. The prevalence rate of anti-CMV IgM in 1-3-month-old children was 4-fold higher than that in newborns [25.8% (95% CI: 21.1 to 30.5) and 6.4% (95% CI: 2.9 to 9.9, respectively]. In contrast, no significant difference was found for anti- CMV IgG positivity between newborns and 1-3-month-old infants (84% and 85%, respectively).
Conclusions: The data obtained strongly encourage screening of pregnant women for anti-CMV IgG and IgM to avoid transmission of the infection and severe complications of congenital infection.
Background: Hepatitis A virus (HAV) infection is an acute, self-limited liver disease transmitted usually through the faecal-oral route via person-to-person contact. Bulgaria has intermediate HAV endemicity with higher susceptibility among adults and recurrent outbreaks.
Aim: As HAV infection is strongly related to human movements and represents a significant risk to travelers and migrants, as well as to local population receiving these groups, we set out to analyze the epidemiological data on hepatitis A in five of the largest tourist border regions of Bulgaria located in its eastern part: Varna, Shumen, Dobrich, Burgas and Yambol.
Materials and methods: We reviewed retrospectively all reported cases of acute hepatitis A in the eastern regions of Bulgaria over a 7-year period between 2008 and 2014.
Results: A total of 2879 newly infected patients were registered during the study period, the number varying widely: from 190 cases in 2014 to 923 in 2012. The average incidence of HAV was higher in the south-eastern regions than in the northeastern regions (55.30%000 vs 15.04%000 respectively, p < 0.0001). The most affected age group in all regions was the 5-9-year olds (p < 0.0001) and males were significantly more susceptible to HAV (p = 0.02).
Conclusion: Hepatitis A is still a major public health problem in Bulgaria; there is a significant difference in the incidence of the disease between the regions in the south-east and those in the north-east and between the different age groups and sexes.