Risk factors and predictors of severe dengue in Saudi population in Jeddah, western Saudi Arabia

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American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, 102(3), 613-621. American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (2020) .

American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene


This study was performed to determine the risk factors and predictors of severe dengue fever (SDF) in Saudi population in Jeddah, Western Saudi Arabia. This 7-year retrospective study included children and adults with confirmed dengue from 2010 to 2016. Demographic, clinical, laboratory, serological, and virologic data were collected. Comparative analyses were performed between pediatric and adult SDF cases defined according to the WHO 2009 dengue classification. During the study period, dengue was confirmed in 17,646 cases with predominant infection of adults (6.5 times that of children) and males (3.8 times that of females). May and June were associated with 43.9% of total dengue cases. All 56 pediatric and 187 adult SDF cases were hospitalized. At least one warning sign of severe illness was present in 92.2% of total SDF cases. Mortality rates were 8.9% and 10.7% of pediatric and adult SDF cases, respectively. Multiple logistic regression detected that the most significant risk factors and predictors of SDF in adults versus children were significantly more secondary dengue infection (adjusted odds ratio [AOR]: 2.20, 95% CI: 1.09-4.44, P = 0.02), significantly less clinical fluid accumulation (AOR: 0.17, 95% CI: 0.07-0.44, P < 0.001) and significantly less neutropenia (AOR: 0.41, 95% CI: 0.17-0.97, P = 0.04). This was the first large multicenter study evaluating SDF in Saudi population and considering the WHO 2009 dengue classification, which showed predominant infection of adults and males with dengue, few SDF cases with low mortality and highlighted predictors of SDF in adults versus children. Consideration of warning signs for severe dengue may result in hospital admission, prompting closer monitoring, timely and proper interventions and reduced mortality in SDF cases.

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