Written by Dr. Sangamithra, MBBS | 
Medically Reviewed by Dr. Sunil Shroff, MBBS, MS, FRCS (UK), D. Urol (Lond) on Apr 08, 2016

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.


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