year 17, Issue 6 (November - December 2023)                   Iran J Med Microbiol 2023, 17(6): 638-645 | Back to browse issues page

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Abdullah Al Ruwaished M, Gharbi J, Al Ahmed K, Mohamed Ali A, Ben M'hadheb M. Epidemiology and Etiology of Viral Acute Respiratory Infections Among Children in Al-Ahsa Province - Saudi Arabia. Iran J Med Microbiol 2023; 17 (6) :638-645
1- Department of Biological Sciences, College of Science, King Faisal University, Al-Ahsa, Saudi Arabia
2- Department of Biological Sciences, College of Science, King Faisal University, Al-Ahsa, Saudi Arabia ,
3- Department of Polyclinic, King Faisal University, Al-Ahsa, Saudi Arabia
4- Virology and Antiviral Strategies Research Unit UR17ES30, Higher Institute of Biotechnology, University of Monastir, Monastir, Tunisia
Abstract:   (565 Views)

Background and Aim: Respiratory viruses are the most causative agents of disease in humans, with a significant impact on morbidity and mortality worldwide, mainly in children. The main objective of this work is to study the epidemiology and the etiology of common acute respiratory infections (ARI) among children in the province of Al-Ahsa in Saudi Arabia.
Materials and Methods: In the current work, we tested 83 oropharyngeal specimens from December 2021 to June 2022, collected from pediatric patients aged between 1 and 13 years in Al-Ahsa province in Saudi Arabia. Multiplex PCR/RT-PCR was used to detect respiratory viruses, including human Respiratory Syncytial Virus (hRSV-A), Influenza Virus A and B (INFA and INFB), human Adenovirus (hAdV), human Enterovirus (hEV), human Rhinovirus (hRV), human Parainfluenza Virus (hPIV3), and human Bocavirus (hBoV).
Results: Of 83 oropharyngeal specimens, 58 (69.88%) were positive, with a higher percentage among children ≤ 5 years. hRV and hRSV-A were predominant at 31.33% and 24.1%, respectively, followed by hEV (18.1%), hPIV3 (13.25%), and hAdV (8.43%). Co-infection represented a high percentage, with 25.3% of all samples. hEV was the most virus detected as a co-infection. Noteworthy, respiratory viruses, including hRV, hPIV3, and hAdV increased in spring, while hRSV-A and hEV increased in winter. Rhinorrhea and cough were the most frequent symptoms among patients with positive samples, especially with hRV patients. On the other hand, fever was more prevalent in hRSV-A and hEV patients than in others. Noteworthy, dyspnea/tachypnea was more frequently associated with hPIV3 than other viruses.
Conclusion: Results demonstrated an important prevalence of acute respiratory infections among children and improved data on the epidemiology of respiratory viruses among children living in Al-Ahsa province in Saudi Arabia.

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Type of Study: Original Research Article | Subject: Medical Virology
Received: 2023/09/19 | Accepted: 2023/12/12 | ePublished: 2024/01/29

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