Colon non tumor
Infectious colitis (specific microorganisms)
CMV colitis

Author: Hanni Gulwani, M.D. (see Authors page)

Revised: 4 January 2017, last major update May 2013

Copyright: (c) 2003-2017, PathologyOutlines.com, Inc.

PubMed Search: cmv colitis
Cite this page: CMV colitis. PathologyOutlines.com website. http://www.pathologyoutlines.com/topic/colonCMV.html. Accessed October 24th, 2017.
Definition / general
  • Associated with AIDS or transplant patients
  • Usually affects ileocecal area; may cause vasculitis, luminal thrombosis and associated severe necrotizing disease
  • CMV burden is low so difficult to detect these cells; stool examinations usually normal
  • Early and rapid colonoscopy is beneficial in transplant patients (Transplant Proc 2005;37:3059)
  • Frequently associated with inflammatory bowel disease, but not always pathogenic (Dig Liver Dis 2004;36:818)
Case reports
Clinical images

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Diffuse inflammation

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Ulcerating mass

Gross description
  • Ulceration, discrete mass
Gross images

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Ulceration and erythema

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Ulceration secondary to CMV colitis

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Terminal ileum

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Caecum

Microscopic (histologic) description
  • Smudgy intranuclear and cytoplasmic inclusions in endothelial cells, fibroblasts and smooth muscle cells; rarely in epithelial cells
Microscopic (histologic) images

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CMV inclusions

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CMV inclusions-immunocompetent patient

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Superficial ulceration


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Enlarged nuclei containing basophilic inclusions

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Figures A, B

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Giant cell with inclusion body

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Crypt with multiple apoptotic cells


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Mass-like lesion

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Epithelial cytomegalic cells

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CMV+ cells

Positive stains
  • CMV immunostain
Differential diagnosis