Epidemiological features of invasive and noninvasive group A streptococcal disease in the Netherlands, 1992-1996

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A prospective, nationwide, laboratory-based surveillance of invasive group A streptococcal infections was conducted in the Netherlands from 1992 through 1996. Clinical and demographic data were obtained and all isolates were T/M typed. All noninvasive group A streptococcal isolates were registered from 1994 through 1996. A total of 880 patients with invasive streptococcal disease were identified. The annual incidence was found to be 2.2 per 100,000. Predominant M types were M1 (21%), M3 (11%), M6 (5%), M12 (5%), and M28 (8%). Particular age and M-type distributions were observed in different clinical entities. The case-fatality rate was 18% overall, but it reached 59% among cases of toxic shock-like syndrome. Older age, necrotizing fasciitis, sepsis without focus, pneumonia, infection with type M1 or M3 strains, and underlying cardiopulmonary disease were associated with fatality. A total of 10,105 patients with noninvasive group A streptococcal disease were registered. These patients differed significantly from patients with invasive disease with regard to age distribution and primary foci of infection.

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