We studied isolates from 73 patients hospitalized with typhoid fever in Lima, Peru. Of these 73 patients, 11 (15%) suffered a clinical relapse, with fever and positive blood cultures, within 3 months of their original illness. Using plasmids as epidemiologic markers, we found that three patients who subsequently relapsed were initially infected with more than one strain of Salmonella typhi. There was a highly significant association between relapse and isolation of a strain containing either a 24- or 38-kilobase plasmid at the time of the original infection; however, we were unable to show any evidence of homology between these two plasmids. Our data indicate that infection with multiple strains is not uncommon in this endemic area and suggest that relapse may be partly strain dependent.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Microbiology (medical)