Clinical profile of enteric fever in tertiary care hospital of Kashmir


  • Sheikh Mushtaq Department of Pediatrics, Government Medical College Srinagar, Kashmir, India
  • Altaf Ahmad Bhat Department of Pediatrics, Government Medical College Srinagar, Kashmir, India
  • Ghulam Nabi Rather Department of Pediatrics, Government Medical College Srinagar, Kashmir, India
  • Rukaya Akhter Department of Pediatrics, Government Medical College Srinagar, Kashmir, India
  • Iqra Bhat Department of Pediatrics, Government Medical College Srinagar, Kashmir, India
  • Tariq Wani Department of Pediatrics, Government Medical College Srinagar, Kashmir, India



Children, Enteric fever, Salmonella, Typhoid



Background: Enteric fever is common cause of pyrexia in children and its diagnosis poses several problems, the diagnosis most often remains either as an unsubstantiated clinical impression or a serological diagnosis and occasionally confirmed by blood culture. Typhoid fever is a commonly encountered systemic disease caused by the gram-negative bacteria Salmonella enterica serovar typhi. It is a major public health problem in India. The incidence of enteric fever can be regarded as an index of sanitary measure practiced in our country. Aim of our study was to know the clinical profile, hematological features of clinically and serologically suspected typhoid cases, antibiotic pattern in use, the time to defervescence with the treatment received and over all hospital stay days.

Methods: This was a retrospective record file review of all admitted children for pyrexia under evaluation who were clinically suspected as cases of enteric fever and serologically proven by significant titres of O and H antigen and few were culture proven cases of enteric fever carried out at a tertiary care children hospital in Kashmir valley over the period January 2012 to January 2016.

Results: During this period, a total of 129 children with typhoid fever were admitted to Pediatric ward. Of the 129 children, 69 (53.5%) were boys and 60 (46.5%) were girls. The age range of the study population was 1 year to 15 years. The predominant symptoms of typhoid fever were fever 123 (95.3%), anorexia/weakness 58 (45.0%), abdominal pain 53 (41.1%), pallor 47 (36.4%), coated tongue 42 (32.6%), headache 30 (23.3%) and gastrointestinal symptoms/ dysentry 9 (7.0%). Diarrhea 25 (19.4%) was more common than constipation 5 (3.9%) in this study. Hepatomegaly 26 (20.2%) and splenomegaly 67 (51.9%), lymphadenopathy 24 (19.4%) and seizure in 5 cases (3.9%) were other major physical findings. Typhoid complications were seen in the form of jaundice (deranged LFTs) 25 (19.4%), abdominal distention 20 (15.5%) and tenderness 14 (10.9%), encephalopathy 5 (3.9%), shock 3 (2.3%) and UTI 4 (3.1%). Blood culture was positive in 36 (27.9%), 20 (15.5%) percent of the isolates were Salmonella typhi, while 16 (12.4%) were Salmonella paratyphi A. low yield was attributed to oral antibiotics received outside hospital setting. Ceftriaxone was used to treat all the patients diagnosed with enteric fever. Oral Azithromycin was added to treatment regime in those patients who were persistently febrile after 6 days. Those patients who were discharged before 14 days, therapy was completed with oral cefixime. The mean duration of hospital stay was 9.6 days for uncomplicated cases. Leukopenia was seen in majority of the patients with mean cell count of 6492.7cubic/mm. The mean time to defervescence in patients who received prior antibiotics was 4 days while that in those who did not receive prior antibiotics was 5 days.

Conclusions: Atypical presentations are seen in typhoid fever patients so we need to be cautious about it, clinical symptoms and signs can vary with different regional studies, may be attributed to use of empirical oral antibiotic that alter the clinical presentation of enteric fever. Low culture positivity is due to prior or ongoing antibiotic treatment outside hospital setting. Leucopenia could be an important marker of typhoid. Ceftriaxone is important available cephalosporin for sensitive cases. Combination treatment was used to treat persistently febrile child. 


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