Objective: Selenium deficiency adversely affects the clinical outcome of measles in the tropics. In developed countries, serum selenium level has never been investigated during acute measles. The aim of this study was to determine serum selenium concentrations in French patients with acute measles and to seek correlations with clinical and virological findings.
Patients and methods: We studied serum selenium concentrations in 94 French patients with acute measles and in 99 healthy controls matched for age and sex.
Results: The mean of selenium concentration was significantly lower in the patients than in the controls (46.4±14.1μg/L versus 86.5±13.9μg/L, P<0.0001). In the patients, selenium concentrations were not associated with age, sex, vaccination status, clinical signs or specific antibody responses. Selenium levels did not differ significantly between patients with uncomplicated measles (45.8±14.2μg/L) and patients with complications (52.7±13.2μg/L) (P=0.15).
Conclusion: Acute measles is associated with significant reduction of selenium level that did not seem to negatively affect the course of the disease suggesting compensating mechanisms in patients from developed countries against the disease.
Keywords: French patients; Measles; Selenium.
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