Journal Article

Fever in Liver Transplant Recipients: Changing Spectrum of Etiologic Agents

Feng Yee Chang, Nina Singh, Timothy Gayowski, Marilyn M. Wagener and Ignazio R. Marino

in Clinical Infectious Diseases

Published on behalf of Infectious Diseases Society of America

Volume 26, issue 1, pages 59-65
Published in print January 1998 | ISSN: 1058-4838
Published online January 1998 | e-ISSN: 1537-6591 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/516265
Fever in Liver Transplant Recipients: Changing Spectrum of Etiologic Agents

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Febrile episodes in liver transplant recipients were prospectively evaluated. Fever was due to infections in 78% of the episodes (35 of 45) and due to noninfectious causes in 22% (10 of 45). The predominant sources of fever were bacterial infections (62%; 28 of 45) and viral infections (6%; 7 of 45), whereas rejection accounted for only 4% of the episodes (2 of 45). Forty percent of the infections were unaccompanied by fever; fungal infections were significantly less likely to be associated with fever than were viral or bacterial infections (P = .001). Eighty-six percent (6) of the 7 febrile viral infections were due to viruses other than cytomegalovirus, of which human herpesvirus- 6 was the predominant pathogen (71%; 5 of 7). Eighty percent (four) of the five febrile episodes with leukopenia were due to human herpesvirus-6. Episodes of fever were most likely to occur within 12 weeks (58%) or 1 year (29%) after transplantation; 100% of the latter episodes were in patients with recurrent hepatitis due to hepatitis C virus, malignancy, or chronic hemodialysis. In conclusion, cytomegalovirus and rejection were no longer the predominant etiologies of fever in liver transplant recipients, and viruses other than cytomegalovirus (e.g., human herpesvirus-6) are emerging as a significant cause of febrile viral illnesses in these patients.

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Subjects: Infectious Diseases ; Immunology ; Public Health and Epidemiology ; Microbiology

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