Department of PaediatricsUniversity of Turin, Regina Margherita Children’s Hospital
Cite this article as:
Calitri, C., Gabiano, C., Garazzino, S. et al. Eur J Pediatr (2010) 169: 1511. doi:10.1007/s00431-010-1255-y
Clinical features and outcome of 2009 H1N1 influenza virus in the paediatric setting is ill-defined. The epidemiologic and clinical features of children with confirmed H1N1 influenza virus infection admitted to an Italian tertiary paediatric hospital from August through December 2009 were evaluated. A total of 63 children (mean age 4.3 years) were studied; of these, 29 (46%) had chronic underlying diseases. The most frequent symptoms and signs at admission were fever (97%), cough (60%) and respiratory disturbances (24%). Forty patients (63.5%) had H1N1-related complications: 32 (51%) pulmonary diseases, three (5%) neurological disorders, such as acute encephalitis or acute disseminated encephalomyelitis, and two (3%) haematological alterations. Three patients were admitted to the Intensive Care Unit. Most children (81%) were treated with oseltamivir: one developed rash during treatment; no other adverse events were noticed. All children survived without sequelae. In conclusions, 2009 H1N1 influenza virus infection in children is associated with a wide spectrum of clinical manifestations. Neurological disorders are not exceptional complications. Oseltamivir therapy seems safe also in infants.