Epidemiology and Infection

Research Article

Trends in encephalitis-associated deaths in the United States

N. KHETSURIANIa1 c1, R. C. HOLMANa2, A. C. LAMONTE-FOWLKESa1, R. M. SELIKa3 and L. J. ANDERSONa1

a1 Respiratory and Enteric Viruses Branch, Division of Viral and Rickettsial Diseases, National Center for Infectious Diseases, Atlanta, GA, USA

a2 Office of the Director, Division of Viral and Rickettsial Diseases, National Center for Infectious Diseases, Atlanta, GA, USA

a3 HIV Incidence and Case Surveillance Branch, Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention, National Center for HIV, STD, & TB Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA, USA

SUMMARY

The United States national mortality statistics and HIV/AIDS surveillance data were analysed to determine trends in encephalitis-associated deaths and to assess the impact of HIV infection on those deaths during 1979–1998, a period when ICD-9 codes were used for coding deaths in the United States. A total of 25 125 encephalitis deaths were reported; 4779 of them (19%) had concurrent HIV infection. Overall encephalitis death rates remained stable, but they increased for groups where HIV infection was common and declined or remained unchanged for others. For persons without HIV infection, the rates declined in all demographic groups. Encephalitis deaths in HIV-infected persons followed general trends for HIV deaths in the United States. The rates in the HIV-infected population were several hundred- to thousand-fold higher than in the HIV-uninfected population. HIV infection was largely responsible for the lack of overall decline in the considerable mortality associated with encephalitis in the United States during 1979–1998.

(Accepted June 27 2006)

(Online publication August 29 2006)

Correspondence:

c1 *Author for correspondence: N. Khetsuriani, M.D., Ph.D., Respiratory and Enteric Viruses Branch, Division of Viral and Rickettsial Diseases, National Center for Infectious Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1600 Clifton Rd, MS-A34, Atlanta, GA 30333, USA. (Email: nkhetsuriani@cdc.gov)

Footnotes

The results of this study were presented, in part, at the 39th Annual Meeting of the Infectious Disease Society of America, 25–28 October 2001, San Francisco, USA.

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