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February 27, 1953
Vol. 2, No. 7
The incidence of measles in the United States has been increasing during the past 5 months. The peak incidence is usually reached in the spring. The number of cases (8,017) for the current week is a little more than a third of the number (22,824) reported for the corresponding week of 1952. Wisconsin has been reporting the largest weekly numbers of cases. However, for this week Texas reported the largest number. For the current week, States reporting 500 or more cases are: Texas. 1,421; Wisconsin, 1,229; Ohio, 611; and California, 572.
There were 524 cases of whooping cough reported for the current week. Texas with 106 cases was the only State to report more than a hundred cases. For the first 7 weeks of the year, a total of 4,589 cases has been reported in the United States as compared with 8,471 for the corresponding period of last year.
For the current week 89 cases of poliomyelitis were reported in the country as a whole. This is the first week since the middle of May 1952 in which the weekly number of cases has been less than 100. This is the second consecutive week that the weekly total has been less than that for the corresponding week of the previous year.
U susiy yo thanh The proportion of deaths from influenza continued to be high among persons 65 years of age and over, as shown by figures supplied by a few large cities.
The World Health Organization reports that influenza is apparently widespread in Spain, and increasing in Switzerland, Iceland, Finland, and Bavaria. In France it is reported that the disease is present in certain localized areas in the east central part of the country, and a recrudescence of influenza is reported in the southwest. In Italy influenza is widespread with attack rates of 10 to 30 percent. Localized outbreaks have been reported in Yugoslavia and the western towns of Turkey. Outbreaks in Thailand and the Cook Islands are also reported. A few mild cases of influenza with no deaths were noted in Bermuda about February 10.
Dr. C. H. Andrewes, World Influenza Center, London, reports that most of the strains of influenza virus isolated from cases in England and Europe are close to the Scandinavian subtype (Sweden A 3/50). However, strains isolated in Paris and Switzerland are more like the Liverpool subtype.
Anthrax in animals
According to a report from the Department of Agriculture, 17 outbreaks of anthrax in animals occurred in 11 States and Puerto Rico during January 1953. There were no anthrax outbreaks reported in 30 States. For most of the outbreaks the source of infection was unknown. However, infected soil was responsible for 5 outbreaks and contaminated feed was responsible for 2. Twenty cows and 20 hogs were lost in 15 of these outbreaks. The losses in 2 outbreaks in South Dakota were not given. A supplemental report for 1952 shows that Texas experienced 5 outbreaks in October and 2 in November. The losses were 16 cattle, 15 of which were in October.
Ringworm of the scalp
Dr. A. M. Washburn, Arkansas State Board of Health, reports that information was received from 1 county of an outbreak of ringworm of the scalp in a grade school involving 25 children, These children were treated locally and the usual control measures have been instituted.
The following reports have been received from the Influenza Information Center, N. I, H. and the National Office of Vital Statistics.
Dr. C. C. Croft, Ohio Department of Health, has reported the serologic diagnosis of influenza A-prime in 7 cases occurring in 3 different areas. Three were in Columbus, 3 in Bowling Green, and 1 in Wayne County.
The Navy Research Unit at Great Lakes, Illinois, has reported 6 strains of influenza A (strain not specified) and 1 strain of influenza B which were isolated during January. During the same period serologic diagnosis of influenza A (FM-1) was obtained in 19 cases, and of influenza B (Lee) in 2 cases.
Dr. L. L. Parks, Florida State Board of Health, reports that influenza has been widely distributed in the State but there is a definite decline in the incidence.
Dr. E. H. Lennette, California Department of Public Health, has reported the serologic diagnosis of influenza A and A-prime in 43 cases having onsets from January 8 to 22. Most of these were from the San Francisco area and the others were from scattered areas in the State.
The number of deaths from influenza and pneumonia reported by 58 cities was 594 for the week ended February 14 as compared with 610 for the previous week. The numbers reported for these cities by geographic division, with figures for the previous week in parentheses, were: New England, 35 (32); Middle Atlantic, 200 (180); East North Central, 94 (112); West North Central, 68 (91); South Atlantic, 69 (67); East South Central, 53 (40); West South Central, 23 (57); Mountain, 21 (8); and Pacific, 31 (23). These data apparently indicate that the peak of mortality from influenza and pneumonia was reached the week ended February 7. On February 18, Dr. J. R. Strain, Maryland Department of Health, reported that the number of deaths from influenza and pneumonia for the previous week in the State increased over an earlier peak about 3 weeks previously.
Dr. Washburn reports that a diagnosis of lung flukes (paragonimus westermani) in a person was made at a hospital in Arkansas. No information was received as to the origin of the infection.
Dr. W. H. Y. Smith, Alabama Department of Public Health, reports that scattered cases and several outbreaks of infectious hepatitis are being reported throughout the State. In Lee County the incidence began increasing late in December or early January, and reached its peak about the middle of January. An epidemiologic survey was made which revealed reports of 35 cases from private physicians. Visits to each school in the county uncovered 18 additional cases. Most of the patients were of school age and one rural and one urban school had the greatest concentration of cases. Liver function tests revealed abnormal findings in many instances. The disease was considered to be spread by person to person contact. The original source of the infection could not be determined. Investigation of a report disclosed 24 probable cases of infectious hepatitis in widely scattered areas of Lawrence County. The prevalence of influenza and other respiratory infections was a complicating factor in determining actual cases. While only persons experiencing jaundice or definite URQ tenderness were listed, it is quite possible that other nonicteric infections were missed. The disease was apparently spread from person to person and was centered mainly in the schools.
ter who was married on January 10. On the day of the wedding a party was held at the family home. Ham and turkey sandwiches and bottled punch were served. That evening 4 of the family became ill, and 2 days later 2 more had symptoms of the disease. The eighth member of the family became ill on January 13. Laboratory examination of stool specimens from 3 patients revealed Shigella son nie. Only 2 guests at the party were known to have suspicious symptoms but specimens were not taken from these.
Dr. W. J. Murphy, Georgia Department of Public Health, reports a case of trichiniasis in a 54-year-old white man. The diagnosis was confirmed by muscle biopsy. The patient had eaten raw sausage, sent from a friend in a neighboring State. His wife and daughter who did not eat the meat did not become ill. Larvae were recovered from remnants of the sausage.
Dr. W. L. Halverson, Director, California Department of Public Health, reports a case of typhoid fever, phage type 3, in a 6-year-old child. The source was a private laboratory where the patient had been playing with mice inoculated with S. typhi Army strain 58.
Dr. Dean Fisher, Maine Department of Health and Welfare, reports an outbreak of shigellosis in one family. The source of infection of the first case, which occurred January 7, was unknown, The other cases probably developed from contact in the family. The only member of the family to escape the illness was a daugh
Dr. R. R. Cross, Illinois Department of Public Health, reports an outbreak of 36 cases of gastro-enteritis in a hospital. The incubation period was from 6 to 8 hours. The laboratory test of the suspected vehicle, left over turkey, revealed the presence of coliform organisms. No other information was given.
Table 1. COMPARATIVE DATA FOR CASES OF SPECIFIED NOTIFIABLE DISEASES: UNITED STATES
(Numbers after diseases are category numbers of the Sixth Revision of the International Lists, 1948)
: data not included
Symbols. -1 dash [-]: no cases reported; asterisk [:]: disease stated not notifiable; parentheses, [ ]
dohes [---] : data not available.
in total; ?
Table 2. CASES OF SPECIFIED DISEASES WITH COMPARATIVE DATA: UNITED STATES,
EACH DIVISION AND STATE FOR WEEK ENDED FEBRUARY 21, 1953
Table 2. CASES OF SPECIFIED DISEASES WITH COMPARATIVE DATA: UNITED STATES,
EACH DIVISION AND STATE FOR WEEK ENDED FEBRUARY 21, 1953—Continued