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Pneumococcal infections 

Pneumococcal infections
Chapter:
Pneumococcal infections
Author(s):

Anthony Scott

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199204854.003.070603_update_001

May 30, 2013: This chapter has been re-evaluated and remains up-to-date. No changes have been necessary.

Update:

Serotypes and genome sequencing.

Epidemiology in West Africa.

Vaccination programmes in Africa.

Pneumococcal meningitis—investigations and short-cource therapy.

Updated on 31 May 2012. The previous version of this content can be found here.
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date: 11 December 2017

Streptococcus pneumoniae is an encapsulated Gram-positive bacterium that lives almost exclusively in the human nasopharynx. Each pneumococcus expresses one of more than 90 immunologically distinguishable capsular polysaccharides that are the principal target of systemic human immunity and define its serotype.

Pneumococci are transmitted through contact with infected nasal secretions or by airborne dissemination, and most preschool children carry them in their nasopharynx. The risk of acquisition is increased by contact with other children, crowded environments, and cold weather. The incidence of pneumococcal disease is highest in young children and elderly people, and also increased in males, certain indigenous populations, smokers, alcoholics, and patients with chronic medical illnesses or immune susceptibility, including HIV infection, sickle cell disease, and splenectomy....

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