Varicella zoster virus infection associated with high-dose chemotherapy and autologous stem-cell rescue.
A retrospective evaluation of 215 consecutive recipients of high-dose chemotherapy (HDC) and autologous stem cell rescue (ASCR) was conducted to ascertain the incidence, temporal course, and outcome of varicella zoster virus (VZV) infection. Herpes zoster was identified in 40 individuals at a median of 69 days following ASCR. Six of these cases occurred at a median of 33 days prior to ASCR but following the initiation of high doses of stem cell mobilization chemotherapy. Twenty-five percent of patients demonstrated cutaneous or systemic dissemination and 32.5% required medical intervention for post-herpetic neuralgia. All except two individuals received antiviral chemotherapy. One patient with active VZV infection died of multiorgan failure 39 days after ASCR. Multivariate analysis of risk factors disclosed the significance of prophylactic acyclovir use in Herpes simplex virus seropositive individuals in reducing the risk of VZV infection. Moreover, the use of busulfan, thiotepa and carboplatin as the conditioning chemotherapy regimen was associated with an increased risk of subsequent VZV infection. The incidence of VZV reactivation after HDC and ASCR is similar to that observed following bone marrow transplantation but has an earlier onset. This may be related to an earlier induction of immunosuppression by stem cell mobilization chemotherapy administered prior to ASCR. We demonstrated a marked reduction in the proliferative and synthetic capacities of peripheral blood mononuclear cells obtained prior to and following stem cell mobilizing chemotherapy. Moreover, greater than 80% of VZV infections occurred within 6 months following ASCR and late cases were seldom observed compared to allogeneic and autologous bone marrow transplantation. The role of antiviral chemoprophylaxis during the period of maximum immunocompromise needs to be studied further in the HDC-ASCR setting. (+info)
Disseminated superficial actinic porokeratosis like drug eruption: a case report.
We report a 54-year-old male patient who developed an unusual form of generalized drug eruption. He had pain and breathlessness on the left chest wall. He had history of taking several drugs at private clinics under a diagnosis of herpes zoster. Two weeks later he had a generalized skin eruption. Examination showed multiple variable sized, mild pruritic, erythematous macules and papules on the face and upper extremities. Skin lesions take the form of a clinically consistent with disseminated superficial actinic porokeratosis (DSAP). Methylprednisolone 16 mg, astemisole 10 mg, oxatomide 60 mg was prescribed. Topical corticosteroid cream was applied. Within two months, his eruption had cleared almost completely. The pathogenetic mechanisms of this case are unclear, but drug and UV light have been considered. (+info)
Latent Varicella-zoster virus in human dorsal root ganglia.
To understand further the molecular events underlying the process of Varicella-zoster virus (VZV) latency in human ganglionic tissues, in situ hybridisation (ISH) for VZV RNA and DNA, and PCR in situ amplification for VZV DNA were used in human dorsal root ganglia from 12 individuals (3 normal and 9 who had died with AIDS). The results showed that (a) two separate regions of the VZV genome, represented by genes 4 and 40, were detected in neurons in two normal and three AIDS ganglia, (b) evidence of transcription of VZV genes 4, 21, 29, and 63 was found in normal and AIDS cases, and (c) VZV DNA and RNA for the same gene (gene 29) was detected in neurons in serial tissue sections in three cases. Thus more than one region of the VZV genome is present in neurons during VZV ganglionic latency, and the presence of both a VZV gene and its corresponding RNA transcript can be shown to occur in the same localised region of DRG tissue. (+info)
Prevalence of varicella-zoster virus DNA in dissociated human trigeminal ganglion neurons and nonneuronal cells.
Previous analyses using in situ hybridization alone or together with PCR have yielded conflicting results regarding the cell type in which latent varicella-zoster virus (VZV) resides. We separated human trigeminal ganglia (TG) into neuronal and nonneuronal fractions, followed by primary and nested PCR to quantitate VZV DNA at the single cell level. Both TG from each of eight cadavers were dissociated and separated into neuronal and nonneuronal cell suspensions by differential filtration. Analysis of the neuron fraction (5,000 neurons per sample) revealed VZV DNA in 9 of 16 samples, with copy numbers ranging from 1 to 12, whereas only 2 of 16 nonneuronal cell samples were positive for VZV DNA, with 1 copy each. Further analysis of 10 samples of 100 neurons and the corresponding nonneuronal cell fractions from each TG of a single subject revealed VZV DNA in 3 of 10 samples of the left TG (range, 2 to 5 copies) and in 1 of 10 samples of the right TG (2 copies) but in none of the 20 nonneuronal cell fractions. These data indicate that latent VZV DNA is present primarily, if not exclusively, in neurons, at a frequency of two to five copies per latently infected neuron. (+info)
Behavioural changes in the rat following infection with varicella-zoster virus.
Following the establishment of a chronic varicella-zoster virus infection in the rat, behavioural allodynia and hyperalgesia were observed in the injected, but not the contralateral hind limb up to 33 days post-infection. This model may prove useful in investigating mechanisms involved in the establishment of post-herpetic neuralgia. (+info)
Environmental chemical exposures and risk of herpes zoster.
This study investigated whether residence in Aberdeen, North Carolina, the location of the Aberdeen pesticides dumps site (a national priority list Superfund site containing organochlorine pesticides, volatile organic compounds, and metals), is associated with immune suppression as indicated by a higher incidence of herpes zoster and recent occurrences of other common infectious diseases. Study participants included 1,642 residents, 18-64 years of age, who responded to a telephone survey concerning potential occupational and recreational exposures to pesticides and other chemicals, lifetime history of herpes zoster (shingles), and the recent occurrence of other common infectious diseases. Stratified and logistic regression analyses were used to compare the cumulative incidence of herpes zoster among Aberdeen residents and residents of nearby communities. There was little evidence of an overall increased risk of herpes zoster among Aberdeen residents during the period 1951-1994 [relative risk (RR), 1.3; 95% confidence interval (CI), 0.8-2.1]. However, an elevated risk of herpes zoster was noted consistently among Aberdeen residents of younger ages as compared to residents of the nearby communities. The RR was 2.0 (CI, 1.0-4.0) among those 18-40 years of age and was not affected by controlling for potential confounders. The RR of herpes zoster was also consistently elevated in all age groups for the period before 1985. No differences were noted between residents of Aberdeen and those of the nearby communities with respect to the recent occurrence of other common infectious diseases. These results support the plausibility of an association between exposure to the Aberdeen pesticides dumps site and immune suppression and the potential use of herpes zoster as a marker of immune suppression in studies of environmental chemical exposures. (+info)
Zoster incidence in human immunodeficiency virus-infected hemophiliacs and homosexual men, 1984-1997. District of Columbia Gay Cohort Study. Multicenter Hemophilia Cohort Study.
Zoster is an important clinical problem for human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV)-infected patients. Risk factors for zoster and trends in incidence in HIV-infected hemophiliacs and homosexual men (n=1218) were examined. From 1984 to 1997, 174 zoster cases were identified (average yearly incidence, 2.5%). Prior zoster episodes were associated with increased risk for a subsequent episode (relative risk [RR], 4.30; 95% confidence interval [CI], 3.11-5.95). Among hemophiliacs, children and adolescents had the highest zoster risk, and zoster risk declined with age (RR, 0.80 per decade; 95% CI, 0.68-0.93). These findings suggest that HIV-infected persons do not produce or maintain adequate booster responses after varicella zoster virus exposure. Zoster risk was relatively constant when CD4 cell counts >200 cells/mm3 but increased steeply below this level. During the 14 years of follow-up, zoster incidence declined 9% per year. This trend occurred despite decreasing CD4 cell counts and was unexplained by zidovudine or acyclovir use. (+info)
Spectrum of opportunistic infections and malignancies in patients with human immunodeficiency virus infection in South Korea.
To determine the frequency and types of major opportunistic diseases in patients with HIV infection in South Korea, we reviewed the medical records of 173 HIV-infected patients. The patients were seen from 1985 to 1998 at a referral hospital for AIDS in South Korea. Most patients (85%) were male, and 107 (62%) were infected by heterosexual contacts. CD4+ lymphocyte counts at presentation were <200/microL in 27% of the patients. Tuberculosis was the most frequent opportunistic infection (25% of patients), followed by candidiasis (21%), herpes zoster (20%), Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia (10%), cytomegalovirus disease (9.8%). There were no cases of toxoplasmosis. Kaposi's sarcoma developed in 3 patients (1.7%), and non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, in 2 (1.2%). Eleven patients (6.4%) developed peripheral neuropathy, and 8 (4.6%) had HIV encephalopathy. Tuberculosis was the single most important HIV-related infection in South Korean patients. (+info)