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Clin Infect Dis. 1996 Nov;23(5):1156-8.

Seroconversion to human herpesvirus 6 and human herpesvirus 7 among Brazilian children with clinical diagnoses of measles or rubella.

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  • 1Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia.


We collected acute-phase and convalescent-phase serum samples from Brazilian patients who presented with exanthem of unknown origin and evaluated these samples by means of an immunoblot assay for seroconversion to human herpesvirus 6 (HIV-6) or human herpesvirus 7 (HIV-7). Measles or rubella had been clinically diagnosed in all these patients, but their sera were negative for antibodies to both measles virus and rubella virus. Twenty percent of the patients clearly seroconverted to HHV-6 after manifestation of the exanthem, and 8% seroconverted to HHV-7. All seroconversions to HHV-6 occurred in children aged < or = 5 years; a 41% frequency of seroconversion to HHV-6 was noted among children between 3 months and 23 months of age, whereas seroconversions to HHV-7 were detected during infancy and through adulthood. Our data indicate that primary infections due to HHV-6 or HHV-7 can be misdiagnosed as measles or rubella.

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