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Effect of vaccines on bacterial meningitis worldwide

Authors
Journal
The Lancet
0140-6736
Publisher
Elsevier
Publication Date
Volume
380
Issue
9854
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1016/s0140-6736(12)61187-8
Keywords
  • Review And Opinion
  • Series
  • Bacterial Meningitis
Disciplines
  • Biology
  • Medicine

Abstract

Summary Three bacteria—Haemophilus influenzae, Streptococcus pneumoniae, and Neisseria meningitidis—account for most acute bacterial meningitis. Measurement of the effect of protein-polysaccharide conjugate vaccines is most reliable for H influenzae meningitis because one serotype and one age group account for more than 90% of cases and the incidence has been best measured in high-income countries where these vaccines have been used longest. Pneumococcal and meningococcal meningitis are caused by diverse serotypes and have a wide age distribution; measurement of their incidence is complicated by epidemics and scarcity of surveillance, especially in low-income countries. Near elimination of H influenzae meningitis has been documented after vaccine introduction. Despite greater than 90% reductions in disease attributable to vaccine serotypes, all-age pneumococcal meningitis has decreased by around 25%, with little data from low-income settings. Near elimination of serogroup C meningococcal meningitis has been documented in several high-income countries, boding well for the effect of a new serogroup A meningococcal conjugate vaccine in the African meningitis belt.

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