372. Analysis of infectious diseases in the aftermath of the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami: the threat of pneumonia to survivors
Session: Poster Abstract Session: Community and Healthcare Acquired Pneumonia - Epidemiology
Friday, October 21, 2011
Room: Poster Hall B1
  • IDSA Aoyagi et.al..pdf (192.3 kB)
  • Background: On March 11, 2011, a 9.0-magnitude mega-earthquake struck east of Japan, with an associated gigantic tsunami across the Pacific coast area in Iwate, Miyagi and Fukushima prefectures. It has been reported that some natural catastrophes increases morbidity rates infectious disease and the endemic background influence the development of infectious diseases in the affected area.

    Methods: In this study, we investigated (1) the trends of disaster-related diseases, (2) the variety of infectious diseases and (3) the characteristics of pneumonia within 3 weeks following the disaster. We searched medical records of 1,094 patients admitted to Tohoku University hospital which has 1,300 beds and is located at center of Miyagi prefecture.  

    Results: A total of 425 patients were admitted with injuries related to the disaster or with an acute illness that developed after the disaster. Injuries predominated in the first week; the number of patients with infectious diseases significantly increased after the first week to a total of 136 patients by the end of the study period. Of these, 55 patients had pneumonia; most of them were elderly people (median age: 79) with low levels of serum albumin, and had comorbid conditions such as brain infarction, diabetes mellitus and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Sputum cultures contained Streptococcus pneumoniae, Moraxella catarrhalis and Haemophilus influenza, known pathogens of community-acquired pneumonia. In addition, 15% of patients were urinary pneumococcus antigen positive and 4% were urinary Legionella pneumophila serogroup 1 antigen positive. In one case that was urinary antigen positive, Legionella pneumophila serogroup 1 was also confirmed by sputum culture.

    Conclusion: Hospital admissions after the first week of the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami were predominantly infectious diseases. Among the infectious diseases, pneumonia was a significant threat to people living in uncomfortable conditions, especially the elderly with underlying disease.

    Subject Category: C. Clinical studies of bacterial infections and antibacterials including sexually transmitted diseases and mycobacterial infections (surveys, epidemiology, and clinical trials)

    Tetsuji Aoyagi, MD, PhD1, Mitsuhiro Yamada, MD, PhD2, Hiroyuki Kunishima, MD, PhD2, Koichi Tokuda, MD, PhD, MPH1, Hisakazu Yano, MD, PhD3, Noriomi Ishibashi, MD1, Masumitsu Hatta, MD, PhD1, Shiro Endo, MD, PhD1, Kazuaki Arai, ICMT, PhD3, Hajime Kanamori, MD, PhD1, Miho Kitagawa1, Yoichi Hirakata, MD, PhD3 and Mitsuo Kaku, MD, PhD1, (1)Department of Infection Control and Laboratory Diagnostics, Tohoku University Graduate School of Medicine, Sendai, Japan, (2)Department of Regional Cooperation for Infectious Diseases, Tohoku University Graduate School of Medicine, Sendai, Japan, (3)Department of Clinical Microbiology with Epidemiological Research & Management and Analysis of Infectious Diseases , Tohoku University Graduate School of Medicine, Sendai, Japan


    T. Aoyagi, None

    M. Yamada, None

    H. Kunishima, None

    K. Tokuda, None

    H. Yano, None

    N. Ishibashi, None

    M. Hatta, None

    S. Endo, None

    K. Arai, None

    H. Kanamori, None

    M. Kitagawa, None

    Y. Hirakata, None

    M. Kaku, None

    << Previous Abstract | Next Abstract

    Findings in the abstracts are embargoed until 12:01 a.m. EST Thursday, Oct. 20 with the exception of research findings presented at IDSA press conferences.