Temporal Relationship between Human Parechovirus 1 Infection and Otitis Media in Young Children

Tauriainen, Sisko; Oikarinen, Sami; Taimen, Kirsi; Laranne, Jussi; Sipilä,, Markku; Lönnrot, Maria; Ilonen, Jorma; Simell, Olli; Knip, Mikael; Hyöty, Heikki
July 2008
Journal of Infectious Diseases;7/1/2008, Vol. 198 Issue 1, p35
Academic Journal
Background. Human parechovirus (HPeV) 1 is a common virus that infects almost everyone during childhood. Because clinical symptoms are poorly documented, we evaluated the symptoms associated with HPeV1 infection in a cohort of children followed prospectively from birth at 3-month intervals. Methods. Symptoms such as fever, cough, those of the common cold, otitis media, and gastroenteritis were determined from hospital records and from questionnaires administered to the parents of 59 children during regular study visits. HPeV1 infections were diagnosed by measuring neutralizing antibodies in follow-up serum samples. Additionally, HPeV RNA was analyzed in middle ear fluid (MEF) and nasopharyngeal aspirate samples from 33 patients with otitis media by reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction. Results. Otitis media showed a clear association with HPeV1 infection--it developed in 50% of the 3-month follow-up periods that yielded evidence for HPeV1 infection but in only 14% of the HPeV1-negative periods (odds ratio [OR], 6.14 [95% confidence interval {CI}, 2.75-13.77]). In children with recurring otitis media, MEF samples were positive for HPeV in 15% of episodes. Cough was also associated with HPeV1 infection, but this association was weaker (OR, 3.67 [95% CI, 1.66-8.09]). Other symptoms were not linked to HPeV1 infection. Conclusions. HPeV1 infections are common in childhood and may cause otitis media and cough.


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