Retrospectively diagnosing congenital cytomegalovirus infections in symptomatic infants is challenging

  • Aim: Our aim was to analyse the diagnostic workup of hospitalised infants with symptoms of congenital cytomegalovirus (CMV) infections. Methods: This retrospective study was carried out at the University Hospital Frankfurt, Germany, from 2008 to 2017 on infants aged 4 weeks to 12 months presenting with neurological symptoms consistent with congenital CMV infections. Results: We studied 117 infants, and workup data for CMV infections were available for 84%. Of these, 54% were immunoglobulin G‐ and immunoglobulin M‐seronegative for CMV or immunoglobulin G‐seropositive with no viral shedding. Congenital CMV infection was excluded in these cases. In 16%, the CMV workup was incomplete, precluding a definitive diagnosis. Dried blood spots (DBS) were requested from 30%. CMV polymerase chain reaction was negative in 19 of these 29 infants, and CMV deoxyribonucleic acid detection confirmed congenital CMV infections in six patients. DBS had been destroyed in line with German law in four cases. Congenital CMV infections were diagnosed (5%) or excluded (62%) in 67% of patients and unanswered in the remaining 33%. Conclusion: Diagnoses of congenital CMV infections were widely considered and found in 5%. CMV was not stringently investigated in all patients or remained elusive due to German law on destroying DBS.

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Author:Natalia Lüsebrink, Matthias Kieslich, Holger RabenauORCiDGND, Rolf Lambert Schlößer, Horst BuxmannORCiDGND
Parent Title (English):Acta Paediatrica
Place of publication:Oxford
Document Type:Article
Date of Publication (online):2020/04/12
Date of first Publication:2020/04/12
Publishing Institution:Universitätsbibliothek Johann Christian Senckenberg
Release Date:2020/12/08
Tag:cytomegalovirus; infectious diseases; neonatology; neurological impairment; newborn screening
Page Number:6
Institutes:Medizin / Medizin
Dewey Decimal Classification:6 Technik, Medizin, angewandte Wissenschaften / 61 Medizin und Gesundheit / 610 Medizin und Gesundheit
Licence (English):License LogoCreative Commons - Namensnennung-Nicht kommerziell 4.0