Q fever is a globally widespread zoonosis, which has a large number of animal reservoirs. In humans, Q fever is asymptomatic in 60% of cases but may appear in the form of acute or chronic disease. The disease is mostly asymptomatic in animals but may be a cause of abortions or stillbirths. The aim of this study was to present and analyze the epidemiological characteristics of Q fever in Srem district, in the Autonomous Province of Vojvodina, Republic of Serbia. We conducted a descriptive study using data from the registries of infectious diseases of the Institutes of Public Health of Vojvodina and Institute of Public Health Sremska Mitrovica in the period 2011-2020. A total of 76 human cases of Q fever were registered in Srem district over ten-year period. The majority of patients (89.47%; N = 68) were registered in municipalities of Sremska Mitrovica and Šid. One third of patients were hospitalized (32.89%; N = 25). Males were 3.2 times more affected than females (M : F = 3.22 : 1). Working age population (20–59 years) were most affected (82.89%; N = 63) with a significantly higher incidence compared to the age category 0-19 years (p < 0.05). The majority of cases were registered in February (60.53%; N = 46). Probable routes of transmission of Coxiella burnetii were: direct contact with animals and the airborne route of transmission (50.00% vs. 47.37%). The highest seroprevalence of Q fever recorded in goats (55.54%) and sheep (11.88%) in the municipality of Šid, which is connected to outbreak in Kukujevci 2017. The high seroprevalence in goats, recorded in Inđija (22.87%) was not accompanied by Q fever in humans. Q fever still represents a significant problem of both veterinary and human medicine and therefore continuous disease monitoring and more efficient cooperation of the veterinary and human health care sectors is necessary.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Copyright (c) 2023 Archives of Veterinary Medicine