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Year : 2018  |  Volume : 2  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 63-67

A comparison of three diagnostic platforms for the detection of influenza A and B in children

1 Department of Paediatrics and Child Health, Aga Khan University, Karachi, Pakistan
2 Aga Khan Medical College, Aga Khan University, Karachi, Pakistan
3 Department of Paediatrics and Child Health; Department of Biological and Biomedical Sciences, Aga Khan University, Karachi, Pakistan

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Najeeha Talat Iqbal
Department of Paediatrics and Child Health and Biological and Biomedical Sciences, Aga Khan University, Stadium Road, P.O Box 3500, Karachi
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/bbrj.bbrj_107_17

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Background: Viral flu is the predominant cause of hospitalization in young children, which invariably leads to enhanced morbidity and mortality in children in developing countries. Initial treatment of viral flu is based on presumptive diagnosis. Bedside testing is not common in clinical settings because of variable sensitivity and specificity of rapid tests in different settings. Methods: To address this issue, we evaluated the performance of Binax influenza A/B rapid testing kit against two robust molecular platforms (quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction [qRT-PCR] and TaqMan array card [TAC]) in 24 nasopharyngeal (NP) swabs, collected from children under 5 years of age. Results: Binax was found to be less sensitive (56%), but 100% specific compared to qRT-PCR (100%) and TAC (>100%). Using TAC cards, 75% of samples were found to be coinfected with other bacterial and viral targets. Conclusion: Binax flu is suitable for bedside testing in clinical and community settings. The negative results of Binax should be interpreted with caution and confirmed by rapid molecular tests.

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