Overview of basic epidemiological characteristics and descriptive analysis of the incidence of human yersiniosis in the Czech Republic in 2018-2020

Epidemiol Mikrobiol Imunol. 2022 Spring;71(1):32-39.


Objective: The aim was to provide an overview of the basic epidemiological characteristics of human yersiniosis and to analyze the reported epidemiological data on the incidence of this disease in the Czech Republic (CZ) in 2018-2020.

Methods: A descriptive analysis was performed of cases of yersiniosis captured in the Infectious Disease Information System (ISIN) in the CZ in 2018-2020. MS Excel 2010 was used for data processing and sorting.

Results: In the CZ, a total of 1,686 cases of yersiniosis were reported in 2018-2020 (average annual incidence of 5/100,000 population). The highest average age-specific incidence was recorded in the age group 1-4 years (31.3/100,000), followed by 0-year-olds (26.9/100,000). In the study period, 942 cases were male and 744 cases were female, with the respective incidences of 6.0 /100,000 and 4.6/100,000. By administrative region, the highest average annual incidences were recorded in the South Moravian (9.1/100,000) and Moravian-Silesian (7.5/100,000) Regions. Hospital admission was required for 14.3% (n = 241) of reported cases. No death or outbreak was reported during the study period. A total of 31 cases were imported from usual recreational destinations. No seasonality was detected in the CZ; however, more cases always occur in January and in the second half of the year. Over the last three years, a stagnant trend in the incidence of the disease has been observed in the CZ.

Conclusions: In 2018 and 2019, yersiniosis (caused by Y. enterocolitica and rarely Y. pseudotuberculosis) was the fourth most commonly reported zoonosis in humans in the European Union (EU), with a stable trend in 2014-2019. The CZ reports an incidence up to three times higher but a 2.5 lower share of hospitalized patients compared to the EU average, which probably indicates that the CZ has an effective surveillance system in place. The trend in the incidence of the disease has stagnated in the CZ and the EU in recent years. The most common vehicle for transmission of yersiniosis to humans is contaminated food, especially undercooked pork, less often vegetables or water. Contamination of products from home slaughtered animals intended for private consumption is likely and would also explain the increased incidence of the disease, particularly in the winter months.

Keywords: Czech Republic; Y. pseudotuberculosis; Yersinia enterocolitica; diarrheal diseases; food- and water-borne diseases; waterborne and foodborne infections; yersiniosis.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Czech Republic / epidemiology
  • Disease Outbreaks
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Male
  • Seasons
  • Yersinia Infections* / epidemiology