Attempts to eliminate measles from a country or region may be disrupted by an imported case that affects indigenous persons. The objective of this study was to analyze epidemiological and clinical characteristics of a measles outbreak in Catalonia, Spain, in 2006.
Data on cases of measles reported to the Department of Health, Generalitat of Catalonia, during the period 28 August 2006 through 8 July 2007 were collected. Suspected cases were confirmed by determination of measles-specific immunoglobulin M antibodies and/or detection of virus genome. Incidences were calculated using the estimated population of Catalonia for 2006, and 95% confidence intervals were determined assuming a Poisson distribution. The association between proportions was determined using the chi(2) test and Fisher's exact test. The level of statistical significance was set at alpha = .05.
A total of 381 cases were confirmed, for an incidence of 6.6 cases per 100,000 persons. A total of 89.5% of cases occurred in nonvaccinated persons, mainly those aged