AbstractBACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVE: Parvovirus B19 has a marked tropism for erythroid progenitor cells and this may lead to chronic anemia in predisposed individuals. It was the purpose of the present study to investigate prospectively the frequency of parvovirus B19 infections in patients with a diagnosis of chronic anemia. METHODS AND RESULTS: Evidence of parvovirus B19 infection was found in 13/43 (30%) patients by demonstrating viral DNA and/or specific IgM antibodies through the use of PCR and ELISA techniques. Parvovirus B19 infection was established in 4 of 7 patients with hemolytic anemia, in 2 of 3 patients with pure red cell aplasia, in 2 of 9 patients with myelodysplastic syndrome, and in 2 of 10 patients with aplastic anemia. In 8 of the 13 positive patients only parvovirus B19 DNA could be detected, while 4 patients tested positive for both parvovirus B19 DNA and specific IgM. In the remaining positive patient only specific IgM could be detected. CONCLUSIONS: Since no predictive paraclinical or clinical features were observed we recommend that all cases of chronic anemia be tested for the presence of parvovirus B19 infection. Due to the discrepancies between DNA and IgM results, the diagnostic procedures should include a search for specific DNA by PCR methods if specific IgM has been found to be negative.
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Vol. 82 No. 4 (1997): July, 1997 : Articles
Ferrata Storti Foundation, Pavia, Italy
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