Article via Scoop :
" Auckland medical scientists have helped to identify crucial risk factors for children most susceptible to life threatening infections from the H1N1 influenza virus.
Lead study author Dr Stuart Dalziel and senior research fellow Dr John Thompson from The University of Auckland worked with an international team of paediatric specialists to identify the risk factors.
It is the first study to detail which clinical factors in children at hospital arrival with influenza-like illness and H1N1 infection, are associated with the progressive risk to either severe infection or death.
In the study, now on online in the prestigious British Medical Journal, researchers examined paediatric cases from dozens of emergency departments in hospitals around the world during the global influenza pandemic of 2009.
The results enabled the team to pinpoint several clinical risk factors for severe infections in youngsters who arrive at a hospital with influenza-like illnesses due to H1N1 infections.
The information would be invaluable during a pandemic, when emergency departments and primary-care facilities experience large surges of young patients who arrive with flu-like symptoms.
“The basic question clinicians face when they are in the middle of an influenza epidemic like H1N1 is whether their patient is at risk of severe complications,” says Stuart Dalziel, lead author and a paediatrician at New Zealand’s Starship Children’s Hospital and The University of Auckland, and Vice-Chair of the Paediatric Research in Emergency Departments International Collaborative (PREDICT) network."