Comparison of Influenza, Metapneumovirus (HMPV) and Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) in Children with Leukemia, with and Without Respiratory Symptoms

Document Type: Original article

Authors

1 Professor Alborzi Clinical Microbiology Research Center, Namazi Hospital, Shiraz Medical University, Shiraz, Iran

2 Pediatric Diseases Research Center, Guilan University of Medical Sciences, Rasht, Iran

3 professor Alborzi Clinical Microbiology Research Center, Namazi Hospital, Shiraz Medical University, Shiraz, Iran.

4 Subspecialist in Pediatric Infectious Diseases, Associate Professor, Pediatric Infections Research Center. Research Institute for Children Health, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.

Abstract

Background: Acute leukemia is the most prevalent hematologic malignancy in children and infections are the most prevalent complication in this group. There are few studies on viral respiratory infections in children with leukemia. This article aimed to study the frequency of influenza, Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) and Human Metapneumovirus (HMPV) respiratory infections in children with leukemia.
Methods: This is a cross-sectional study on 110 children with leukemia referred to Amir Hospital (Shiraz) from Aug 23th 2015 to Feb 20th 2016. Fifty-five children had respiratory symptoms (Case group) and fifty-five children had no respiratory symptoms (Control group). RT-PCR was done on respiratory secretions for influenza, RSV and HMPV in both groups. Data was analyzed by SPSS for Windows version 18. A p value<0.05 was considered significant.
Results: RT-PCR for influenza, RSV or HMPV was positive in 14 children in case group and 3 children in control group (p=0.004). The 2 groups were significantly different for having family members with respiratory symptoms (p=0.001), having a history of antiviral drugs usage (p=0.008), duration of the last admission (p<0.05), fever (p=0.001), duration of fever (p<0.05), and neutropenia (p=0.002).
Conclusion: Symptomatic viral respiratory infections are prevalent in children with leukemia. Attention must be paid to respiratory viruses in leukemic children, and if available, specimens should be tested for the presence of influenza viruses, RSV and metapneumovirus.

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