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Rheum Dis Clin North Am. 1998 May;24(2):375-401.

Rheumatic manifestations of parvovirus B19 infection.

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Department of Internal Medicine, Helen C. Levitt Center for Viral Pathogenesis and Disease, University of Iowa College of Medicine, Iowa City, USA.


Human parvovirus B19 is an emerging DNA virus. B19 infection is common and widespread. Major manifestations of B19 infection are transient aplastic crisis, erythema infectiosum, hydrops fetalis, acute and chronic rheumatoid-like arthropathy, and, in the immunocompromised host, chronic or recurrent bone marrow suppression. A number of less common manifestations of B19 infection include various rash illnesses, neuropathies, and acute fulminant liver failure. Of rheumatologic interest, B19 infection must be differentiated from early presentation of more classic erosive rheumatoid arthritis and, in some cases, systemic lupus erythematosus. It is unlikely that B19 plays a role in classic erosive rheumatoid arthritis, but understanding pathogenesis of B19 arthropathy may provide insights into the mechanisms by which rheumatoid arthritis develops. Evidence for persistence of B19 infection suggests that human parvovirus B19 infection may serve as a model for the study of virus-host interactions and the role of viruses in the pathogenesis of rheumatic diseases.

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