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SCIENCE FILE | Science in Brief

New Rotavirus Vaccine Is Found to Sharply Reduce Diarrhea in Children

September 19, 1996|From Times staff and wire reports

The first large trial of a new vaccine against rotavirus, the most common cause of diarrhea in children, has shown that it markedly reduces illness. Rotavirus causes the hospitalization of more than 50,000 children in the United States each year, killing 100. Worldwide, the virus causes 1 million deaths per year.

Dr. Timo Vesikari of the University of Tampere Medical School in Finland reported at the Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy in New Orleans that the vaccine reduced severe diarrhea 91% in 1,190 children who received it. It also prevented 97% of clinic visits caused by rotavirus-induced dehydration and 100% of hospitalizations.

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