UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Human parechovirus infection in young infants : strategies to improve detection and management Kadambari, Seilesh; Harvala, Heli; Simmonds, Peter; Pollard, Andrew J.; Sadarangani, Manish


Human parechovirus (HPeV) infections are the second most common cause of viral meningitis in children. HPeV’s are most frequently seen in infants less than 90 days of age. Clinical manifestations include encephalitis, meningitis, myocarditis and sepsis syndrome, which can lead to significant neurodevelopmental sequelae in young infants. Molecular techniques, including polymerase chain reaction assays are the diagnostic tool of choice and have contributed to a marked increase in reported cases, along with an increasing awareness of the aetiological role of HPeV in infant disease. However, focused clinical and diagnostic investigations for HPeV in infants and the use of such information in management is variable due in part to the lack of robust incidence data and its range of clinical presentations. In this review, we outline recent clinical cohort and epidemiological studies which can be used to inform the evidence based management of young infants with HPeV disease and also identify key research priorities. A better understanding of the pathogenesis and epidemiology of HPeV infections is required to inform an evidence-based approach to diagnosis and treatment in the future.

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