Is Family Screening Necessary in Brucellosis?
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Brucellosis is an endemic disease in Turkey. Simultaneous infections among family members consuming infected dairy products have been reported. The most frequent signs and symptoms are nonspecific, and most human cases remain unrecognized. We aimed to screen family members of index cases with brucellosis.
A questionnaire including demographical and epidemiological data was obtained. All cases were tested by slide agglutination tests (Rose Bengal test). Seropositive ones were further tested by tube agglutination tests (Wrigth test). In the index cases, Brucella antibody titers of ≥ 1:160 with and without clinical symptoms and 1:80 with clinical symptoms were considered positive and the household members were enrolled into the study. Twenty-eigth index cases were identified among a total of 110 family members. Among family members, 90 (82%) were seronegative whereas 20 were seropositive. Among seropositive cases, 12 were asymptomatic and 8 were symptomatic. The most frequent symptoms of the index cases were fever, headache and arthralgia. Symptomatic cases were treated and asymptomatic ones followed up without therapy for a period of 6–12 months and none developed brucellosis. In conclusion, family members of the patients with brucellosis are under the increased risk of brucellosis because of a common source. Therefore, it can be considered that family screening may lead to early diagnosis of the disease and to the prevention of the complications.
KeywordsIndex Case Brucellosis Agglutination Test Rose Bengal Brucella Melitensis
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