News Scan for Oct 27, 2015

HPV vaccine uptake in boys
Avian flu in Nigeria, Vietnam
Bacterial infections from surgery

US study shows low HPV vaccine uptake in teen boys

Only about a third of US teen boys have received even one dose of human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine, and only about one in seven has received the recommended three doses, with uptake a bit higher in some minority groups, according to a study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) yesterday in Pediatrics.

Researchers used 2013 National Immunization Survey-Teen data to assess HPV vaccine uptake in 13- to 17-year-old boys. The CDC recommended in 2011 that all teen boys receive the vaccine.

The CDC researchers found that 34.6% of 9,554 boys had received at least one dose, while only 13.9% received three. The numbers rose to 43.9% and 18.5%, respectively, in Hispanics and 41.4% and 15.9% in African-Americans.

The scientists also found that more frequent contact with healthcare providers and having single moms increased the odds of having received the vaccine. In contrast, having more educated mothers, having a higher family income, and living in the South or Midwest were linked to lower vaccine receipt.
Oct 26 Pediatrics study


OIE: H5N1 outbreak in Nigeria, H5N6 in Vietnam

Nigeria has logged yet another H5N1 avian flu outbreak, and Vietnam confirmed its ninth H5N6 avian flu outbreak since August, according to separate reports posted today by the World Organization of Animal Health (OIE).

In Nigeria, H5N1 killed 1,000 chickens of a flock of 3,500 on a farm in Rivers state in the south, the country's hardest-hit state. The outbreak among egg-laying and broiler chickens began on Oct 17 and was resolved on Oct 22 with the culling of surviving birds and other infection-control steps.

Nigeria has had 96 H5N1 outbreaks so far this year.

The H5N6 outbreak in Vietnam's Quang Ninh province, meanwhile, involved a backyard flock of 370 poultry, 120 of whom died from the disease. It began on Aug 18, was confirmed the next day, but wasn't reported to the OIE till today. Vietnamese health officials did not spell out the reason for the delay.

The remaining 250 birds have been euthanized, the premises disinfected, and other control steps taken, according to the report. Quang Ninh is in the northeast corner of Vietnam, bordering China.
Oct 27 OIE report on Nigeria
Oct 27 OIE report on Vietnam


Contaminated surgery device infects at least 8 in Pennsylvania

At least eight people have developed nontuberculous mycobacterium (NTM) infections from a device used during open-heart surgery at a York, Pa., hospital and four have died, with the infections likely playing a role, the hospital said in a news release yesterday.

WellSpan York Hospital is notifying about 1,300 open-heart surgery patients of possible exposure to the bacterium during open-heart surgery performed from Oct 1, 2011, to Jul 24, 2015, the hospital said. It added that it has addressed the issue and that patients are no longer at risk.

A study published in Clinical Infectious Diseases in March first alerted the hospital to the risk posed by heater-cooler devices, which help regulate patients' body temperature during heart surgery. During use the devices can aerosolize NTM, which can cause infections during invasive procedures, especially among those with compromised immune systems. Subsequent investigation by the CDC revealed the eight cases.

The hospital said of the four deceased patients, "While the CDC has not directly linked the deaths of these individuals to the NTM infections associated with the heater-cooler devices, it is likely a contributing factor."

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said in an Oct 15 alert that it has received reports of 32 NTM associated with the devices since 2010, with 25 of them this year. The FDA said 24 of the infections occurred outside the United States, mostly in Western Europe. The CDC released an alert about the NTM risk on Oct 21.
Oct 26 WellSpan York Hospital news release
Mar 11 Clin Infect Dis abstract
Oct 15 FDA statement
Oct 21 CDC alert

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