BACKGROUND: Data on the clinical course and outcomes of pediatric patients with cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection complicating acute severe ulcerative colitis (ASC) are very limited. The aim of our study was to compare outcomes of children with ASC who were CMV-positive or CMV-negative.
METHODS: This was a multicenter retrospective case-controlled study, from centers affiliated with the Pediatric IBD Porto Group of ESPGHAN. We included CMV -positive children hospitalized for ASC and compared their colectomy rate during hospitalization and up to 1 year thereafter, matched with CMV-negative controls.
RESULTS: A total of 56 children were included; 15 CMV-positive and 41 CMV-negative. More CMV-positive patients were resistant to intravenous corticosteroids as compare to CMV negative (93% and 56% respectively, p=0.009). Fourteen of the CMV-positive children (93%) were treated with ganciclovir (5/14 (36%) with 5mg/kg and 9/14 (64%) with 10mg/kg). During hospitalization, 3 (20%) CMV-positive and 3 (7.8%) CMV-negative patients required colectomy (p=0.17). By 12 months, 5 (33%) and 5 (13%) CMV-positive and negative patients required colectomy, respectively (p=0.049); the significance was not retained on multivariate analysis.
CONCLUSIONS: A higher prevalence of CMV-positivity was found in pediatric UC patients who required colectomy within 12 months of hospitalization for ASC. Further studies are needed to clarify the impact of CMV infection on the outcome of acute severe colitis in pediatric patients.