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Early life parechovirus infection neurodevelopmental outcomes at 3 years: a cohort study
journal contributionposted on 01.04.2020, 00:00 authored by P N Britton, K Walker, B McMullan, C Galea, R Burrell, B Morgan, I Honan, S Teutsch, H Smithers-Sheedy, N Fairbairn, R Mattick, Delyse HutchinsonDelyse Hutchinson, C A Jones
Objective: To investigate the long-term developmental and behavioral outcomes in an established cohort of children hospitalized as infants with human parechovirus (HPeV) infection and sepsis-like illness. Study design: The HPeV cohort was composed of children 3 years of age after HPeV infection and hospitalization in early infancy that occurred during a well-documented HPeV genotype 3 outbreak in Australia. We assessed neurodevelopmental and behavioral outcomes using the Bayley Scales of Infant and Toddler Development-III and the Child Behavior Checklist. We compared their outcomes with a subsample of healthy control infants drawn from the independently sampled Triple B Pregnancy Cohort Study. Results: Fifty children, with a mean age of 41 months, were followed for 3 years after hospital admission with HPeV infection. There were 47 children whose original illness was fever without source or sepsis-like illness and 3 who had encephalitis. All children in the HPeV cohort showed age-specific development within the population normal range on the Bayley Scales of Infant and Toddler Development-III. There was no difference in developmental attainment compared with 107 healthy control infants after adjusting for measured confounders. The HPeV cohort showed higher average scores on the Child Behavior Checklist and a higher frequency of clinical range scores compared with healthy controls. Conclusions: Although HPeV sepsis-like illness did not result in neurodevelopmental delay at 3 years of age, it was associated with increased behavioral problems compared with healthy controls. The behavioral problems reached a clinical threshold in a minority of children. Results inform clinical management and planning for children after severe HPeV infection in infancy.