a1 Instituto de Ciências Biomédicas Abel Salazar, Universidade do Porto, Portugal
a2 Unidade de Saúde Pública, Vila Nova de Famalicão, Portugal
a3 Faculdade de Farmácia, Universidade do Porto, Portugal
a4 Departamento de Biologia, Universidade de Aveiro, Portugal
In response to an alert due to epidemic gastroenteritis in children in a kindergarten, an outbreak investigation was carried out in a Portuguese municipality. The objectives were to establish an aetiological diagnosis, assess vaccine efficacy if possible, and to take corrective measures if necessary. The warden at the kindergarten was interviewed, and we visited the premises. The overall attack rate was 11·4% and most cases were mild. Stool samples from three symptomatic children were collected and screened for the presence of noroviruses, rotaviruses and adenoviruses. High vaccination coverage against rotaviruses was recorded in children aged <2 years. We initially thought that noroviruses and rotaviruses were more likely to have been the aetiological cause of the disease, but the outbreak was caused by infection with adenovirus 41. These viruses should not be overlooked in the laboratory protocol in the study of acute gastroenteritis outbreaks.
(Accepted November 09 2010)
(Online publication December 15 2010)