Background: Human parechovirus type 3 (HPeV3) infection can cause sepsis-like syndrome and meningoencephalitis in neonates and young infants. Although maculopapular rash is a reported clinical manifestation of HPeV3 infection, the frequency and detailed characteristics of rash in neonates and young infants with HPeV3 infection are unknown.
Methods: We retrospectively reviewed the clinical characteristics of neonates and young infants who received a diagnosis of HPeV3 infection on the basis of real-time polymerase chain reaction analysis of serum and/or cerebrospinal fluid specimens at the National Center for Child Health and Development in Tokyo between November 2010 and September 2011.
Results: Fifteen neonates and young infants were diagnosed as having HPeV3 infection; median age was 33 days (range: 10–81 days). The most common clinical presentation on admission was fever (80%), the median duration of which was 3 days (range: 1–4 days). Five (33%) children required admission to the intensive care unit for close observation, and 2 (13%) required mechanical ventilation for cardiovascular instability. After hospitalization, all children developed rash, mainly on the extremities, at a mean of 3 days (range: 1–5 days) after fever onset. The most striking finding was that 80% (12/15) of patients developed a distinctive palmar–plantar erythematous rash, which disappeared after a median of 3 days (range: 2–7 days). All patients were discharged from hospital without serious sequelae.
Conclusions: Palmar–plantar erythema in febrile neonates and young infants may be a diagnostic clue of HPeV3 infection.
From the *Department of Medical Subspecialties, Division of Infectious Diseases; †Department of Interdisciplinary Medicine, Division of General Pediatrics, National Center for Child Health and Development, Tokyo; and ‡Department of Pediatrics, Niigata University Graduate School of Medical and Dental Sciences, Niigata, Japan.
Accepted for publication October 15, 2012.
Presented in part at the Pediatric Academy Societies Annual Meeting, Boston, MA, May 2012.
This study was supported by a Grant from the National Center for Child Health and Development (21A-2 to A.S.). The authors have no other funding or conflicts of interest to disclose.
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Address for correspondence: Akihiko Saitoh, MD, PhD, FAAP, Professor and Chairman, Department of Pediatrics, Niigata University Graduate School of Medical and Dental Sciences, 1–757 Asahi-machi, Chuo-ku, Niigata, 951–8510 Japan. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.