Filipino and Japanese researchers detected human adenovirus (HAdV) serotype 7, a virus causing acute lower respiratory infection, among young infants who suffered from severe pneumonia and causing high fatality rate.
Pneumonia is a form of respiratory infection affecting lungs, which is the leading cause of death in children worldwide. Caused by viruses, bacteria, or fungi, pneumonia may develop to severe stage when the child has difficulty in breathing, inability to eat, lethargy, unconsciousness, vomiting, and convulsions.
According to World Health Organization (WHO), different pathogens causing pneumonia and its transmission are in need of more research as these are crucial for its treatment and prevention.
Focusing on pneumonia cases at Eastern Visayas Regional Medical Center (EVRMC), a tertiary governmental hospital located in Tacloban city, researchers found that a number of baby patients with severe pneumonia were also HAdV-positive and the fatality rate of these cases was considerably high (44%).
In fatal cases, infants began to show respiratory symptoms within seven days prior to admission and all died due to secondary respiratory failure within three days (two cases within 24 hours) of admission, indicating a rapid deterioration caused by HAdV infection.
“Sustained monitoring on the basis of molecular epidemiological methods is required to reveal background of pneumonia patients with HAdV infections [and] to further develop public health strategies,” researchers proposed.
The study is published in the Journal of Japanese Infectious Disease in 2014 and also available online in Pubmed at www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pudmed.
- Written by Hope R. Bongolan