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Selected research from leading health care experts whose findings have a direct bearing on public policies effecting medical progress. Research is chosen based on its quality and relevance by the Medical Progress Today editorial staff.

Selected Research

Effect of Introduction of the Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine on Drug-Resistant Streptococcus pneumoniae
Ruth Lynfield, M.D., Moe H. Kyaw, Ph.D., New England Journal of Medicine, 4-6-06

In this study, researchers attribute a significant decline in the number of drug-resistant pneumococcal infections among infants and older adults to pneumococcal conjugate vaccine inoculations.

Rates of invasive disease caused by penicillin-nonsusceptible strains and strains not susceptible to multiple antibiotics peaked in 1999 and decreased by 2004, from 6.3 to 2.7 cases per 100,000 (a decline of 57 percent; 95 percent confidence interval, 55 to 58 percent) and from 4.1 to 1.7 cases per 100,000 (a decline of 59 percent; 95 percent confidence interval, 58 to 60 percent), respectively.

Among children under two years of age, disease caused by penicillin-nonsusceptible strains decreased from 70.3 to 13.1 cases per 100,000 (a decline of 81 percent; 95 percent confidence interval, 80 to 82 percent).

Among persons 65 years of age or older, disease caused by penicillin-nonsusceptible strains decreased from 16.4 to 8.4 cases per 100,000 (a decline of 49 percent). Rates of resistant disease caused by vaccine serotypes fell 87 percent. An increase was seen in disease caused by serotype 19A, a serotype not included in the vaccine (from 2.0 to 8.3 per 100,000 among children under two years of age).

Researchers concluded that "the rate of antibiotic-resistant invasive pneumococcal infections decreased in young children and older persons after the introduction of the conjugate vaccine."



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