Korean J Aerosp Environ Med.  2020 Aug;30(2):75-79. 10.46246/KJAsEM.30.2.75.

Epidemiologic Trends and Aspects of Severe Fever with Thrombocytopenia Syndrome Outbreaks in Korea and Japan, 2013~2017

  • 1College of Veterinary Medicine, Konkuk University, Seoul, Korea
  • 2Department of Internal Medicine, Aeromedical Center of Korean Air, Seoul, Korea


This study focuses on the comparative and quantitative analysis of the epidemiologic trends and aspects of severe fever with thrombocytopenia syndrome (SFTS) outbreaks between Korea and Japan from 2013 to 2017. The following factors were analyzed; cumulative incidence rate (CIR), cases-fatality rate (CFR), and the epidemic aspects, including cases related to gender, male-to-female morbidity ratio (MFMR), age, seasonal,and geographical distributions. We observed 607 SFTS cases with CIR in Korea during the period 2013 to 2017 were as 0.24 per 100,000 populations and with a 127 fatal-cases (F.C.s), corresponding to a CFR of 20.9%, respectively. During the same period in Japan, 319 SFTS cases with a CIR of 0.05 and with 60 F.C.s to a CFR of 18.8% observed. When compared, the CIR of SFTS in Korea was significantly higher than in Japan (P<0.01), but there were no significant differences levels of the CFR and MFMR between Korea and Japan. Also, a higher incidence of SFTS was observed in people aged over 50-years or elders in Korea and those of 60-years or elders in Japan (P<0.01). The seasonal distribution of SFTS outbreak cases showed that the incidence in summer through autumn in Korea (92.4% of total cases) was higher than in Japan (65.2%), while the outbreaks of SFTS in spring was much higher in Japan (31.0%) than in Korea (7.4%), (P<0.01). The regional distribution revealed no significant difference between the eastern area (44.8%) and the western area (46.8%) of the Korean peninsula except Jeju-island (8.4%). However,in Japan, the incidence only occurred in Chubu-Kinki-Chugoku (30.3%), Shikoku (25.7%),Kyushu (42.6%) and Okinawa (0.3%), which are the western and southern areas of Japan. These differences in SFTS occurrence may reflect the influences of vector/hosts, climate, and geographical and cultural characteristics between the two countries.


Phlebovirus; Epidemiology; Risk factors; Republic of Korea; Japan
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