Adenovirus infection associated with central nervous system dysfunction in children

Yhu Chering Huang, Sun Lin Huang, Shih Perng Chen, Ya Ling Huang, Chung Guei Huang, Kuo Chien Tsao, Tzou Yien Lin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Adenovirus is a common pathogen in the pediatric population. No reports systemically evaluated central nervous system (CNS) dysfunction associated with adenovirus. Objective: To describe the detailed clinical features of adenovirus-associated CNS dysfunction in children. Study design: Of 3298 children with a throat virus culture positive for adenovirus treated at a university-affiliated hospital, from January 2000 to June 2008, in northern Taiwan, medical charts were retrospectively reviewed and those with CNS dysfunction were included. Results: 109 (3.3%) children had signs or symptoms of CNS dysfunction on admission. The median age was 3.6 years and 81 (76%) were less than 5 years of age. 64 (59%) were male. The most frequently cited CNS symptoms were seizure (64%), altered state of consciousness (13%), visual hallucination (9.3%) and lethargy (7.5%). The most common diagnoses included febrile seizure (48%), encephalitis (26%), afebrile seizure (11%) and meningitis/meningismus (8.3%). 31 (46%) of 67 patients receiving electroencephalogram examination had abnormal findings and 13 (36%) of 36 with image studies had abnormal findings. Ninety-nine (91%) children returned to normal health, 7 (6.4%) had a sequel of seizure disorder, and 3 (2.7%) had major sequelae and none died. Nine serotypes were identified, with three major serotypes (types 3, 2 and 1). Conclusion: CNS dysfunction was identified in 3.3% of children with adenoviral infection and most occurred in those <5 years old. The clinical prognosis seemed well. However, CNS dysfunction is a potentially serious complication of adenovirus infection in children.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)300-304
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Clinical Virology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Adenovirus
  • Central nervous system dysfunction
  • Children
  • Encephalitis
  • Seizure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Virology
  • Infectious Diseases


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