An outbreak of leptospirosis among Peruvian military recruits.

Kevin L. Russell, Marco A. Montiel Gonzalez, Douglas M. Watts, Roberto C. Lagos-Figueroa, Gloria Chauca, Marianela Ore, Jose E. Gonzalez, Cecilia Moron, Robert B. Tesh, Joseph M. Vinetz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

47 Scopus citations

Abstract

Acute undifferentiated febrile illnesses are common in tropical developing countries but are difficult to diagnose on clinical grounds alone. Leptospirosis is rarely diagnosed, despite evidence that sporadic cases and epidemics continue to occur worldwide. The purpose of this study was to diagnose an outbreak of acute undifferentiated febrile illness among Peruvian military recruits that developed after a training exercise in the high jungle rainforest of Peru. Of 193 military recruits, 78 developed an acute febrile illness with varied manifestations. Of these, 72 were found to have acute leptospirosis by a microscopic agglutination test (MAT). An enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay using Leptospira biflexa antigen was insensitive for the detection of anti-leptospiral IgM antibodies compared with the MAT (20 of 72, 28%). This outbreak of acute undifferentiated febrile illness among Peruvian military recruits was due to leptospirosis. High clinical suspicion, initiation of preventative measures, and performance of appropriate diagnostic testing is warranted in similar settings to identify, treat, and prevent leptospirosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)53-57
Number of pages5
JournalThe American journal of tropical medicine and hygiene
Volume69
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 2003

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Parasitology
  • Virology
  • Infectious Diseases

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    Russell, K. L., Montiel Gonzalez, M. A., Watts, D. M., Lagos-Figueroa, R. C., Chauca, G., Ore, M., Gonzalez, J. E., Moron, C., Tesh, R. B., & Vinetz, J. M. (2003). An outbreak of leptospirosis among Peruvian military recruits. The American journal of tropical medicine and hygiene, 69(1), 53-57. https://doi.org/10.4269/ajtmh.2003.69.53