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Low incidence of toxoplasma infection during pregnancy and in newborns in Sweden

  • B. EVENGÅRD (a1), K. PETERSSON (a2), M-L. ENGMAN (a3), S. WIKLUND (a4), S. A. IVARSSON (a4), K. TEÄR-FAHNEHJELM (a5), M. FORSGREN (a6), R. GILBERT (a7) and G. MALM (a3)
  • DOI:
  • Published online: 01 August 2001

To estimate the burden of disease due to congenital toxoplasmosis in Sweden the incidence of primary infections during pregnancy and birth prevalence of congenital toxoplasmosis in 40978 children born in two regions in Sweden was determined. Women possibly infected during pregnancy were identified based on: 1, detection of specific IgG based on neonatal screening of the phenylketonuria (PKU) card blood spot followed by retrospective testing of stored prenatal samples to detect women who acquired infection during pregnancy and follow up of their children to 12 months; 2, detection of specific IgM on the PKU blood spot.

The birth prevalence of congenital toxoplasmosis was 0·73/10000 (95% CI 0·15–2·14) (3/40978).

The incidence of primary infection during pregnancy was 5·1/10000 (95% CI 2·6–8·9) susceptible pregnant women. The seroprevalence in the southern part was 25·7% and in the Stockholm area 14·0%.

The incidence of infection during pregnancy was low, as the birth prevalence of congenital toxoplasmosis. Neonatal screening warrants consideration in view of the low cost and feasibility.

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Epidemiology & Infection
  • ISSN: 0950-2688
  • EISSN: 1469-4409
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