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An Unusual Presentation of Generalized Edema in an Adult With Parvovirus Infection

Krishnan, Jamuna K. BSE*; Cinti, Sandro K. MD*†

Infectious Diseases in Clinical Practice: March 2013 - Volume 21 - Issue 2 - p 145–146
doi: 10.1097/IPC.0b013e318269917d
Case Reports

We describe a patient who presented with arthralgia, dyspnea, and edema and was subsequently diagnosed with parvovirus B19 infection. His hospital course was complicated by acute kidney injury, anemia, and significant volume overload. Diagnosis was made by polymerase chain reaction and serology. Treatment was supportive and resulted in complete resolution. This case illustrates both common and unusual manifestations of parvovirus infection. We suggest two different mechanisms by which parvovirus infection can result in anasarca. Parvovirus infection should be on the differential for acute unexplained generalized edema.

This case illustrates the multi-systemic manifestations of parvovirus infection while highlighting edema as a unique finding. Krishnan et al. discuss the potential mechanisms by which parvovirus infection could lead to edema, including myocarditis, glomurulonephritis, and a capillary-leak like syndrome. Clinicians should be aware of this unique manifestation and include parvovirus infection in the differential for unexplained generalized edema.

From the *University of Michigan Medical School; and †Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Infectious Diseases, Veterans Affairs Ann Arbor Healthcare System, Ann Arbor, MI.

Correspondence to: Sandro K. Cinti, MD, Division of Infectious Diseases, Veterans Affairs Ann Arbor Healthcare System, 2215 Fuller Road, Ann Arbor, MI 48105. E-mail:

The authors have no funding or conflicts of interest to disclose.

© 2013 by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.