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Infections caused by viruses of the parapoxvirus (PPV) genus, including orf and pseudocowpox viruses, are frequently seen in both humans and animals in many regions of the world. These infections are often misdiagnosed or neglected because of the lack of clinician awareness, inadequate diagnostic capacity, and their relatively mild disease presentation, which may result in affected individuals not seeking medical attention. Although PPV infections should be routinely considered in patients with cutaneous lesions, especially in those who have occupational exposure to farm animals, they are often excluded from the differential diagnosis because they are not perceived as serious, resulting in underestimation of the burden of disease. Since 2014, significant enhancements to Georgia’s epidemiologic and laboratory capacity have made PPV surveillance and detection possible. In this study, we present information on 27 confirmed cases of PPV infection reported to Georgia’s national surveillance system from January 2016 through January 2017.
Financial support: This publication is sponsored by the U.S. government and Cooperative Biological Engagement Program with support from CRDF Global. The content of the information does not necessarily reflect the position or the policy of the federal government and no official endorsement should be inferred.
Authors’ addresses: Giorgi Chakhunashvili and Khatuna Zakhashvili, Communicable Disease Department, National Center for Disease Control and Public Health, Tbilisi, Georgia, E-mails: firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com. Bradley F. Carlson, Laura Power, and Matthew L. Boulton, Department of Epidemiology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, E-mails: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, and firstname.lastname@example.org. Ekaterine Khmaladze, Davit Tsaguria, and Mari Gavashelidze, Department of Virology, National Center for Disease Control and Public Health, Molecular Biology and Genome Research, Tbilisi, Georgia, E-mails: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, and email@example.com. Paata Imnadze, Department of Epidemiology, National Center for Disease Control and Public Health, Tbilisi, Georgia, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.