Case Report

Haemorrhagic cystitis due to BK virus in a child with ALL on standard chemotherapy without stem cell transplant

12 Sep 2013
Samin Alavi, Mohammad Kaji Yazdi, Mahmoud Parvin, Farahnaz Zohrehbandian, Roxana Azma

The BK virus (BKV) is a nonenveloped double-stranded DNA virus of the polyomavirus family that primarily affects immunocompromised people. BKV infects humans at an early age. Initial infections with BKV are mainly asymptomatic and usually remain latent in the brain, peripheral blood, kidneys, and urothelium. Following the primary infection, viruses persist indefinitely as ‘latent’ infections of the kidney and urinary system because the virus is urotheliotropic. Reactivation of the virus infections occurs in individuals with severe immunosuppression states such as kidney and stem cell transplantation and rarely in pregnancy. In this line, BKV has been implicated as a common cause of lateonset haemorrhagic cystitis (HC) in patients who have undergone stem cell transplantation. In contrast, reports of BKV-associated diseases in nontransplant paediatric patients are almost exclusively in patients with human immunodeficiency virus infection. Herein, we report the first case of a child with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia who developed BKV-associated HC without receiving stem cell transplantation while on standard maintenance chemotherapy.

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