Mumps outbreak in the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina with large cohorts of susceptibles and genetically diverse strains of genotype G, Bosnia and Herzegovina, December 2010 to September 2012.
- Clinical and Applied Virology
A mumps outbreak reported from the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina involved 7,895 cases between December 2010 and September 2012. This was the largest outbreak in the country since the introduction of the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine in 1980. The highest disease incidence was found among 15 to 19 year-olds. About 39% (3,050/7,895) of cases reported to be unvaccinated; the vaccination status of 31% (2,426/7,895) was unknown. A seroprevalence study among 150 asymptomatic contacts to mumps cases showed that about one third (45/150) were susceptible to mumps. Among 105 clinically suspected mumps patients hospitalised at the Clinical Centre of the University of Sarajevo, orchitis (60% of all males: 51/85) and meningitis (9%: 9/105) were the most common complications. Among 57 outbreak sequences obtained for the small hydrophobic gene, eight different variants of genotype G viruses were identified. The outbreak affected mainly age groups comprising individuals who were not vaccinated during or after the Bosnian war, as well as cantons with single dose immunisation policies until 2001. In addition to issues related to vaccination of individuals, differential responses to vaccines and vaccine strains, waning of antibodies and potentially also the genetically diverse variants of genotype G may have compounded the size and duration of the outbreak. Our report emphasizes the need for supplementary immunisation programmes in particular for adolescents and young adults.