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Am J Kidney Dis. 2006 Jan;47(1):167-70.

Human herpesvirus 8 infection in hemodialysis patients.

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Department of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Athens University Medical School, Athens, Greece.



The aim of the present study was to evaluate human herpesvirus 8 (HHV-8) seroprevalence in Greek hemodialysis patients. Patterns of change in HHV-8 serostatus (seroconversions and seroreversions) over time were also evaluated.


Serum samples obtained from a cohort of 485 Greek hemodialysis patients were tested for antibodies to HHV-8 by whole virus lysate enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, and reactive samples were confirmed by means of the orf-73 enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. HHV-8 seroprevalence at study entry and the incidence of seroreversions and seroconversions per 100 person-years were estimated.


The prevalence of HHV-8 antibodies in Greek hemodialysis patients at enrollment was 7.2%. No univariate associations were established between HHV-8 serostatus and patients' characteristics. Incidences of seroreversions and seroconversions were 16.4/100 person-years (95% confidence interval, 7.1 to 32.3) and 0.28/100 person-years (95% confidence interval, 0.03 to 1.02), respectively. Patients 50 years and younger had an increased probability for seroreversion to HHV-8 antibodies than patients older than 50 years (log-rank test, P = 0.018).


We observed a fair number of seroreversions and a low incidence of seroconversion to HHV-8 infection in hemodialysis patients in Greece. Our data provide indirect evidence that HHV-8 transmission in the hemodialysis setting is uncommon.

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