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Hepatology. 1997 Jul;26(1):192-7.

Mini-microabscess syndrome in liver transplant recipients.

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  • 1Department of Internal Medicine, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, USA.

Abstract

Cytomegalovirus (CMV) is a significant cause of morbidity in immunosuppressed patients. It is characterized in the liver by parenchymal microabscesses, usually containing CMV-infected cells. However, not all hepatic microabscesses are due to CMV infection. In 1992, we described "mini" microabscess (MMA) syndrome, a distinct clinical syndrome that occurs in transplanted livers. This report analyzes the clinical and laboratory features of 57 cases of MMA syndrome occurring in 52 patients and compares these with 19 biopsy-proven cases of CMV infection. The diagnosis of MMA syndrome can only be made histologically. The microabscesses are smaller and more numerous than in CMV infection, and there are no viral inclusions present. CMV DNA could not be detected in liver biopsy specimens with MMAs by using "nested" polymerase chain reaction (PCR), indicating that MMA syndrome is not caused by CMV infection. The pattern of liver enzyme and bilirubin elevation is predominantly hepatocellular, with transaminase levels elevated, on average, six to eight times the upper limit of normal. The clinical features of MMA syndrome are that it predominantly affects female (40 of 52 patients) orthotopic liver transplant (OLT) recipients of all ages (range, 11 months to 66.9 years). MMA syndrome is unrelated to the indication for initial OLT and tends to occur later after transplantation than CMV infection (median, 91 days post-OLT vs. 32 days for CMV hepatitis). Although the etiology of MMA syndrome is not clear, it does not appear to adversely affect graft or patient survival.

PMID:
9214469
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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