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Transfusion medicine

Tranfusion-transmitted disease

Parvovirus and transfusion

Reviewer: Huy Phu Pham, M.D. (see Reviewers page)
Revised: 6 November 2011, last major update October 2011
Copyright: (c) 2007-2011, PathologyOutlines.com, Inc.


● Virus present in blood in 1:5,000 donors, but most adults show evidence of prior exposure
● Seropositivity rate is 30-60%
● In Germany, incidence was 13 and 262 per 100K donors for viral loads above and below 100K IU/mL; blood with levels below 100K is considered safe due to high level of neutralizing antibodies; blood with viral loads > 100K IU/mL should not be transfused (Transfusion 2007;47:1775, Transfusion 2006;46:1593)
● Virus is difficult to inactivate, although photochemical treatment with amotosalen combined with UVA light appears to be successful (Transfusion 2007;47:1062)

Clinical features

● Mostly mild, self-limited illness
● Symptoms: rash, vomiting, aching joints and limbs, fatigue and malaise
● Infection in sickle cell disease, thalassemia, and HIV+ patients may result in aplastic crisis
● Infection during pregnancy may result in severe fetal anemia or infant malformation
● Parvovirus attacks erythroblasts, may cause acute anemic crisis in patients with accelerated erythropoiesis, immunocompromise or pregnancy, although usually recipients have no symptoms (Transfusion 2005;45:1811)
● Immune response usually clears infection and provides lifelong protection, but virus may persist in blood or tissue (Transfus Med 2007;17:263)

End of Transfusion Medicine > Tranfusion-transmitted disease > Parvovirus and transfusion

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