- Increased clinical attention has been paid to the evaluation and management of bioterrorism-related illness (such as anthrax infection) and emerging infectious diseases (such as Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome [SARS] and new strains of influenza). However, evaluation and treatment data for these illnesses are often limited because human infections to date have been relatively limited. Further knowledge about diseases of bioterrorism concern and emerging infectious diseases may lead to more effective forms of therapy to prevent disease-related illnesses and deaths.
- To apply standardized, documented, and carefully monitored evaluation and treatment methods for bioterrorism- and biodefense-related illnesses and emerging infectious diseases at the National Institutes of Health Clinical Center.
- Individuals at least 2 years of age who have confirmed or suspected infection by a biodefense or bioterrorism agent, or an emerging infectious disease agent.
- Individuals at least 2 years of age who have confirmed or suspected exposure to a biodefense or bioterrorism agent, an emerging infectious disease agent, or who have close exposure to an individual who is suspected of being infected with one of these agents.
- Health care workers who are involved in medical treatment of the abovementioned infected or exposed individuals.
- All eligible persons will have an initial screening evaluation to determine the circumstances of possible infectious exposure (e.g., where, when, and how exposed), current medical condition and medical care given, and any aspects of medical history that might be relevant to the exposure.
- Participants may be seen in an outpatient clinic or in the Special Clinical Studies Unit (SCSU) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The NIH SCSU is a hospital ward specially designed to minimize the risk of spreading infection to others.
- Upon admission, participants will provide blood and urine samples, have an electrocardiogram to measure heart activity, and have specific tests or procedures associated with the particular infectious agent.
- Participants who develop illnesses will be treated with the standard of care for known diseases or with experimental measures, depending on the nature of the illness. Separate consent may be required for these treatments.
- Participants will remain on this study for at least 1 year following the period of active evaluation and treatment. Participants may be asked to come to the NIH outpatient clinic on a periodic basis for medical evaluations and blood tests, and may be asked to keep a diary card to record any unusual signs or symptoms of possible infection.
| Estimated Enrollment:
| Study Start Date:
||August 31, 2010
Since the fall 2001 distribution of letters containing Bacillus anthracis spores via the US postal system, increased attention has been paid to the evaluation and management of bioterrorism-related illness. Similarly, the emergence of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and other infectious diseases, along with the ongoing threat of global influenza pandemics, have fostered intensive interest in the evaluation and management of emerging infections both in the US and internationally. Data to this end are often limited, however, in that while many such diseases exist in nature, human illness may only rarely occur. The primary purpose of this protocol is to apply standardized, documented, and carefully monitored evaluation and prophylactic and treatment measures in the event of suspected or confirmed exposure to the causative agent of any disease of bioterrorism concern (whether of natural or deliberate origin), to agents under study in biodefense-related research laboratories, or to emerging infectious disease pathogens. Other goals include the characterization of natural history and clinical course of such diseases via the evaluation of close contacts of potentially exposed persons, as well as those who have recovered from illness; the elucidation of the pathophysiology of such diseases; the characterization of immune responses to such diseases; and the evaluation of diagnostic tests for the rapid identification of the causative agents of such diseases in clinical specimens. Further knowledge about diseases of bioterrorism concern and emerging infectious diseases may lead to more effective forms of therapy and improve disease-related morbidity and mortality.