Respiratory syncytial virus infection in infants in rural Nepal

Helen Y. Chu, Joanne Katz, James Tielsch, Subarna K. Khatry, Laxman Shrestha, Steven C. LeClerq, Amalia Magaret, Jane Kuypers, Mark Steinhoff, Janet A. Englund

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Objectives Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) pneumonia is a leading cause of infant mortality worldwide. The risk of RSV infection associated with preterm birth is not well-characterized in resource-limited settings. We aimed to obtain precise estimates of risk factors and disease burden of RSV in infants in rural southern Nepal. Methods Pregnant women were enrolled, and along with their infants, followed to six months after birth with active weekly home-based surveillance for acute respiratory illness (ARI). Mid-nasal swabs were obtained and tested for RSV by PCR for all illness episodes. Birth outcomes were assessed at a postpartum home visit. Results 311 (9%) of 3509 infants had an RSV ARI. RSV ARI incidence decreased from 551/1000 person-years in infants born between 28 and 31 weeks to 195/1000 person-years in infants born full-term (p = 0.017). Of 220 infants (71%) evaluated in the health system, 41 (19%) visited a hospital or physician. Of 287 infants with an assessment performed, 203 (71%) had a lower respiratory tract infection. Conclusions In a rural south Asian setting with intensive home-based surveillance, RSV caused a significant burden of respiratory illness. Preterm infants had the highest incidence of RSV ARI, and should be considered a priority group for RSV preventive interventions in resource-limited settings.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)145-154
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Infection
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 1 2016


  • Pneumonia
  • Preterm birth
  • Resource-limited setting
  • Respiratory syncytial virus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases


Dive into the research topics of 'Respiratory syncytial virus infection in infants in rural Nepal'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this