MMWR News Synopsis

Friday, March 29, 2019

Enterovirus D68-Associated Acute Respiratory Illness — United States, July–October, 2017 and 2018

CDC Media Relations

CDC recently established surveillance of children seen in emergency departments or hospitalized for acute respiratory illness at seven U.S. medical centers. Substantially more children tested positive for Enterovirus D68 (EV-D68) in the 2018 season compared with 2017.  EV-D68 is one of many known enteroviruses. It can cause mild to severe respiratory illness or no symptoms at all. EV-D68 infections typically peak during late summer and early fall in the United States. National reporting of EV-D68 is voluntary. To better understand annual trends of EV-D68 illness, seven U.S. medical centers, participating in CDC’s New Vaccine Surveillance Network (NVSN), are conducting surveillance among children either seen in emergency departments or hospitalized for acute respiratory illness (ARI). From July 1 – October 31, 2018, EV-D68 infections were detected in 358 children with ARI, compared with two during the same period in 2017. Continued active surveillance of EV-D68-associated ARI is key to understanding the circulation and seasonality of EV-D68.

Imported Toxin-Producing Cutaneous Diphtheria — Minnesota, Washington, and New Mexico, 2015–2018

CDC Media Relations

To promote a prompt public health response and to prevent disease transmission,clinicians should consider a diagnosis of cutaneous diphtheria in patients with wound infections who traveled to countries with endemic disease. Diphtheria is caused by the bacterium Corynebacterium diphtheriae and is rare in the United States. Toxin-producing C. diphtheriae bacteria primarily infect the respiratory tract or the skin. While not typically life threatening, cutaneous diphtheria infections are contagious and can result in new cutaneous or respiratory cases. Laboratory testing identified four cases of cutaneous diphtheria caused by toxin-producing C. diphtheriae in patients who returned from international travel. The recommended public health response for cutaneous diphtheria includes treating patients, providing preventive antibiotics to close contacts, testing patients and close contacts for C. diphtheriae carriage, and providing diphtheria vaccine to incompletely vaccinated patients and close contacts.

Candida Bloodstream Infections Among Persons Who Inject Drugs — Denver Metropolitan Area, Colorado, 2017–2018

Shannon Barbare, Communications Manager
Disease Control and Environmental Epidemiology Division
Colorado Dept. of Public Health and Environment
303-692-2036 |

Blood infections with Candida are one of the increasing number of infections associated with injection drug use. Prevention efforts should focus on community interventions for drug use in addition to health care interventions. People who inject drugs are at increased risk of blood infections,including those caused by Candida, a type of fungus. This infection is usually related to being in the hospital, but in a recent analysis, most cases occurred outside the hospital setting. More than 1 in 10 of the candidemia cases in the Denver metropolitan area had a documented history of injection drug use. Many patients had evidence of organ damage related to their infections, and 18 percent of the patients died. Prevention efforts should focus on both health care and community interventions. These should include education about and resources for reducing injection drug use, increasing safe injection practices, and referral to drug treatment programs.



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Page last reviewed: March 29, 2019