Journal Article

Meningococcal Disease among United States Military Service Members in Relation to Routine Uses of Vaccines with Different Serogroup-Specific Components, 1964–1998

John F. Brundage, Margaret A. K. Ryan, Brian H. Feighner and Frederick J. Erdtmann

in Clinical Infectious Diseases

Published on behalf of Infectious Diseases Society of America

Volume 35, issue 11, pages 1376-1381
Published in print December 2002 | ISSN: 1058-4838
Published online December 2002 | e-ISSN: 1537-6591 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/344273
Meningococcal Disease among United States Military Service Members in Relation to Routine Uses of Vaccines with Different Serogroup-Specific Components, 1964–1998

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Historically, military recruits have been at high risk of acquiring meningococcal disease. Beginning in the 1940s, the US military relied on mass treatment with sulfadiazine to control outbreaks in training camps. In the 1960s, a vaccine was developed in response to the emergence of sulfadiazine-resistant strains. Since 1971, all new recruits in the US military have been immunized against Neisseria meningitidis during their first days of service. Serogroups represented in vaccines given to service members have changed over time: the quadrivalent (A, C, Y, W135) vaccine has been given since 1982. In the US military, meningococcal disease rates decreased by ∼94% from 1964 to 1998. After initiating routine immunization in 1971, crude rates decreased sharply and have remained low; in addition, there have been few cases of disease caused by serogroups represented in contemporaneously administered vaccines. In the US military, immunizations have been effective for the prevention of disease caused by vaccine-homologous serogroups of N. meningitidis.

Journal Article.  2748 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Infectious Diseases ; Immunology ; Public Health and Epidemiology ; Microbiology

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