Revista de Saúde Pública
On-line version ISSN 1518-8787
IVERSSON, Lygia Busch and COIMBRA, Terezinha Lisieux Moraes. Encephalitis in the Ribeira Valley (S. Paulo, Brazil) in the post-epidemic period of 1978-1983: a discussion on aspects of etiological diagnosis and epidemiological characteristics. Rev. Saúde Pública [online]. 1984, vol.18, n.4, pp. 323-332. ISSN 1518-8787. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0034-89101984000400007.
The results of observations on encephalitis etiology, distribution and case fatality ratio in the Ribeira Valley, S. Paulo, Brazil, in the period ranging from 1978 to 1983, after an arbovirus encephalitis epidemic, are reported. In none of the eighty known cases was it possible to make the arbovirus etiological diagnosis as only 9 patients (11.25%) had two sera samples collected and no serological conversion was observed. Hemagglutination-inhibition tests for flavivirus Rocio, Ilheus and St. Louis were performed on the 33 patients who had at least one serum sample. In 8 sera titles >20 were observed. Alphavirus VEE, EEE and Mucambo were tested for in 4 of the 33 patients, with negative results. The distribution of cases according to geography, age and sex showed patterns similar to those of the epidemic period. There was a progressive decrease of morbidity during the period 1978-1983, but a significant increase in the case fatality ratio as from the epidemic to the post-epidemic period: 9.9% to 25.0%. The need for urgent improvement in arbovirus encephalitis surveillance has been emphasized by the authors, who have suggested the adoption of measures with a view to etiological diagnosis.
Keywords : Encephalitis; Arboviruses; Epidemiologic surveillance; Ribeira Valley, SP, Brazil.