An Appraisal of the Clinical Features of Pediatric Enteric Fever: Systematic Review and Meta-analysis of the Age-Stratified Disease Occurrence.
Britto C., Pollard AJ., Voysey M., Blohmke CJ.
Children bear a substantial proportion of the enteric fever disease burden in endemic areas. Controversy persists regarding which age groups are most affected, leading to uncertainty about optimal intervention strategies. We performed a systematic review and meta-analysis of studies in Asia and Africa to compare the relative proportion of children with enteric fever in the age groups <5 years, 5-9 years, and 10-14 years. Overall, studies conducted in Africa showed a relatively smaller occurrence of disease in the youngest age group, whereas in Asia the picture was more mixed with a very large degree of heterogeneity in estimates. The clinical features of enteric fever reviewed here differ between younger and older children and adults, likely leading to further uncertainty over disease burden. It is evident from our review that preschool children and infants also contribute a significant proportion of disease burden but have not been adequately targeted via vaccination programs, which have been focusing primarily on school-based vaccination campaigns.