Human parechovirus meningitis and gross-motor neurodevelopment in young children.

Affiliation

Department of Pediatrics, Elisabeth-Tweesteden Hospital, Hilvarenbeekseweg 60, 5022 LC, Tilburg, the Netherlands. [Email]

Abstract

This multicenter prospective cohort study describes the impact of human parechovirus meningitis on gross-motor neurodevelopment of young children. Gross-motor function was measured using Alberta Infant Motor Scale. Of a total of 38 eligible children < 10 months of age at onset, nine cases had clinical evidence of meningitis and polymerase chain reaction positive for human parechovirus in cerebrospinal fluid; 11 had no meningitis and polymerase chain reaction positive for human parechovirus in nasopharyngeal aspirate, blood, urine, or feces; and in 18, no pathogen was identified (reference group).The children with human parechovirus meningitis showed more frequent albeit not statistically significant suspect gross-motor function delay (mean Z-score (standard deviation) - 1.69 (1.05)) than children with human parechovirus infection-elsewhere (- 1.38 (1.51)). The reference group did not fall in the range of suspect gross-motor function delay (- 0.96 (1.07)). Adjustment for age at onset and maternal education did not alter the results.Conclusion: Six months after infection, children with human parechovirus meningitis showed more frequent albeit not statistically significant suspect gross-motor function delay compared to the population norm and other two groups. Longitudinal studies in larger samples and longer follow-up periods are needed to confirm the impact and persistence of human parechovirus meningitis on neurodevelopment in young children. What is Known: • Human parechovirus is progressively becoming a major viral cause of meningitis in children. • There is keen interest in the development of affected infants with human parechovirus meningitis. What is New: • This study describes prospectively gross-motor functional delay in children with both clinical evidence of meningitis and polymerase chain reaction positive for human parechovirus in cerebrospinal fluid. • It shows the importance of screening young children for developmental delay in order to refer those with delay for early intervention to maximize their developmental potential.

Keywords

Children,Human parechovirus,Meningitis,Neurodevelopment,