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Pediatr Infect Dis J. 1993 Oct;12(10):820-4.

Profile of enterovirus disease in the first two weeks of life.

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Department of Pediatrics (Infectious Diseases), University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, Denver.


We studied 57 infants < or = 14 days of age referred for possible enterovirus (EV) infection to assess the accuracy of that clinical diagnosis and describe the natural history of neonatal EV infection. Twenty-nine neonates proved to have EV infection, 23 had illnesses compatible with (but not proven to be) EV infection, and 5 had alternative diagnoses: bacterial infections (2); herpes simplex virus infection (1); and metabolic disorders (2). Neonates with proved EV infection were generally full term and had uncomplicated immediate postnatal periods but high percentages of ill contacts. Neonatal symptoms and signs included fever, irritability, anorexia, lethargy, hypoperfusion, rash, jaundice and respiratory findings. Laboratory abnormalities included cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) pleocytosis, chest radiograph infiltrates, abnormal urinalyses and elevated transaminases. EVs were most commonly isolated from CSF and rectum/stool but also frequently from serum and urine. Five EV-infected patients had severe multisystem disease (pneumonitis, hepatitis, thrombocytopenia, bleeding and meningitis), requiring supportive care and lengthy hospitalizations. All survived, 2 with residual hepatic dysfunction. Markers of severe disease included: early age of illness onset (especially Day 1 of life); maternal viral symptoms at delivery; absence of fever and irritability; tachypnea; lethargy; abdominal distension; hepatomegaly; and positive serum viral culture. These data support conservative management of ill infants < or = 2 weeks of age and suggest that antiviral therapy for neonatal EV infection would be optimally targeted at infants with early onset illness, multisystem disease and/or viremia.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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