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Open Access Research article

Incidence of intussusception in Singaporean children aged less than 2 years: a hospital-based prospective study

Kong Boo Phua1*, Bee-Wah Lee2, Seng Hock Quak3, Anette Jacobsen1, Harvey Teo1, Kumaran Vadivelu-Pechai4, Kusuma Gopala5 and Yanfang Liu4

Author Affiliations

1 KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital, Singapore, Singapore

2 Mount Elizabeth Hospital, Singapore, Singapore

3 National University Hospital, Singapore, Singapore

4 GlaxoSmithKline Vaccines, Singapore, Singapore

5 GlaxoSmithKline Pharmaceuticals, Bangalore, India

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BMC Pediatrics 2013, 13:161  doi:10.1186/1471-2431-13-161

Published: 8 October 2013



Continuous surveillance for intussusception (IS) is important for monitoring the safety of second-generation rotavirus vaccines. The present study aimed to assess the incidence of IS in Singaporean children aged < 2 years.


This was a prospective, hospital-based, multi-center surveillance conducted in seven hospitals - two public hospitals and five private medical centers between May 2002 and June 2010 in Singapore. Diagnosis of IS (definite, probable, possible, suspected) was based on the case definition developed by the Brighton Collaboration. Children < 2 years of age who were diagnosed with IS were enrolled in this study. Incidence of IS was calculated per 100,000 child-year with its 95% confidence interval.


Of the 178 children enrolled, 167 children with definite IS cases were considered for final analyses; 11 were excluded (six diagnosed as probable IS and four diagnosed as suspected IS; one child’s parents withdrew consent). Mean age of children with definite IS was 11.6 ± 6 months; 67.7% were males. The overall incidence of IS was 28.9 (95% CI: 23.0–34.8) and 26.1 (95% CI: 22.2–30.0) per 100,000 child-year in children < 1 year and < 2 years of age, respectively. The majority of IS cases (20 [12.0%]) were reported in children aged 6 months. Most children (98.2% [164/167]) recovered, two (1.2%) children recovered with sequelae and one (0.6%) child died of septic shock.


The incidence of IS remained low and stable in Singaporean children aged < 2 years during the study period (May 2002 to June 2010).

Trial registration


Intussusception; Singapore; Hospital-based; Surveillance; Rotavirus vaccine