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Medical Science Monitor Basic Research


Bocavirus Infection in a Young Pregnant Woman: A Case Report and Literature Review

Unusual clinical course, Challenging differential diagnosis, Unusual setting of medical care

Ahmad Al Bishawi, Fatma Ben Abid, Wanis Ibrahim

Qatar Department of Medicine, Division of Infectious Diseases, Hamad Medical Corporation, Doha, Qatar

Am J Case Rep 2021; 22:e928099

DOI: 10.12659/AJCR.928099

Available online: 2020-11-20

Published: 2021-01-13


BACKGROUND: Human bocavirus (HBoV) is a parvovirus found primarily in children and was first identified in 2005. It usually causes mild upper- and lower-respiratory tract infections. HBoV infection seems to be rare during adulthood, probably due to high antibody titers resulting from childhood infection and seroconversion. The clinical significance, possible complications, and consequences of an adulthood infection are still unclear. Furthermore, the consequences of HBoV infection during pregnancy are seldom reported in the literature.
CASE REPORT: We report the case of a 22-year-old pregnant woman in her third trimester who presented with a 1-week history of fever and cough followed by progressive shortness of breath. She was treated initially as a case of severe pneumonia; however, her condition deteriorated rapidly, resulting in hypoxic respiratory failure that required intensive care support. The patient was found to have dilated cardiomyopathy on echocardiography, and her fetal ultrasound showed no fetal heart activity; subsequently, labor induction for stillbirth was performed. An extensive workup for an underlying cause was unrevealing apart from positive respiratory viral PCR assay for human bocavirus, performed twice. A provisional diagnosis of HBoV pneumonia complicated by dilated cardiomyopathy, stillbirth, and multiorgan failure was made. Fortunately, the patient had a good recovery and was discharged home in good clinical condition.
CONCLUSIONS: In addition to severe pneumonia, HBoV infection may result in other life-threatening complications. Although the infection is rare during adulthood, infection in a pregnant woman should be taken seriously and close monitoring of such patients is advised.

Keywords: Cardiomyopathy, Dilated, human bocavirus, Pregnancy Complications