Risk Factors of Diphtheria
- Diphtheria is most common in areas where people live in crowded conditions with poor sanitation.
- Race: Native Americans generally have much higher rates of diphtheria infection than whites.
- Sex: studies suggest that women are at higher risk than men because of lower immunization rates.
- Age: due to lack of routine immunization among the children aged 6-12 months the disease incidence increased drastically.
- Known exposure, current epidemic, and travel to endemic areas increases risk
- Compromised host, individuals addicted to alcohol and illicit drug users are at an increased risk of diphtheria.
- Homosexual men have increased incidence rates.
- Adults older than 60 years of age and who have not received immunization are at an increased risk of the disease.