536. Influenza C Detection Among Patients Hospitalized with Severe Acute Respiratory Illness, Minnesota 2014-2015
Session: Poster Abstract Session: Respiratory Viruses
Thursday, October 8, 2015
Room: Poster Hall
  • hannah8.pdf (280.5 kB)
  • Background: Influenza C viruses are thought to be non-epidemic and cause mild illness. However, respiratory diagnostic assays do not commonly include detection of influenza C virus.

    Methods: The MN Dept of Health (MDH) initiated surveillance for severe acute respiratory illness (SARI) in April 2013 at 3 hospitals (one children’s hospital) in the Minneapolis/St. Paul metro area. Cases include hospitalized MN residents with acute onset of respiratory symptoms (e.g., cough) with a respiratory specimen collected.  Residual respiratory specimens are submitted to MDH and tested for 25 viral and bacterial pathogens by RT-PCR, including influenza C as of 9/2014. Medical records are reviewed to obtain demographic and clinical data.

    Results: ­­­Influenza C was detected in 39 of 3474 (1.0%) SARI specimens submitted from 9/2014 – 4/2015, specimens collected in December (n=3), January (n=6), February (n=11), March (n=17), April (n=2) were positive. Respiratory distress/shortness of breath was the most common admission symptom (n=26) followed by cough (n=21) and congestion (n=16). One case had influenza C detected twice during the same admission, 20 days apart. Among SARI cases with influenza C detected, median age was 1.5 years (range 0-84 years), most (85%) were <10 years old. Median hospital stay was 2 days; 3 cases had ICU admission (2 with no co-detections); there were no deaths. Underlying medical conditions were reported for 20 (51%) cases, most commonly prematurity (n=8), asthma (n=5), and neurological/neuromuscular disease (n=5). 11 (28%) SARI cases with influenza C had no other pathogens detected; 28 (72%) had co-detections including rhinovirus (n=12), RSV (n=8), parainfluenza (n=7) and human metapneumovirus (n=5). 8 cases had >2 pathogens detected. There was no difference in co-detections by age or underlying condition. One influenza C positive case was hospital-acquired in a patient who has been admitted since birth; no other pathogens were detected in this patient.


    Influenza C was detected among patients, primarily children, hospitalized for SARI.  Cases occurred during influenza A/B season. Continued surveillance for influenza C will help to better understand the epidemiology, including seasonality, severity and risk factors for disease.

    Hannah Friedlander, MPH1, Kathryn Como-Sabetti, MPH1, Sarah Bistodeau, BS2, Anna Strain, PhD2, David Boxrud, MS2, Ashley Fowlkes, MPH3, Andrea Steffens, MPH3, Sandra S. Chaves, MD, MSc3, Stephen Lindstrom, PhD4 and Ruth Lynfield, MD, FIDSA1, (1)Minnesota Department of Health, St. Paul, MN, (2)Public Health Laboratory, Minnesota Department of Health, St. Paul, MN, (3)Influenza Division, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA, (4)Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Atlanta, GA


    H. Friedlander, None

    K. Como-Sabetti, None

    S. Bistodeau, None

    A. Strain, None

    D. Boxrud, None

    A. Fowlkes, None

    A. Steffens, None

    S. S. Chaves, None

    S. Lindstrom, None

    R. Lynfield, None

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