The spectrum of cytomegalovirus infection following human heart-lung transplantation

C. M. Burke, A. R. Glanville, J. A. Macoviak, B. M. O'Connell, H. D. Tazelaar, J. C. Baldwin, S. W. Jamieson, J. Theodore

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


Data were analyzed from 19 long-term survivors of cardiopulmonary transplantation in this institution, including nine patients with normal pulmonary function and 10 recipients with posttransplant obliterative bronchiolitis. In all cases, donor cytomegalovirus titers (IgG), preoperative recipients titers (IgG), and serial postoperative recipient titers (IgM, IgG, and complement fixation) were available. In addition, surveillance cytomegalovirus cultures and pulmonary function tests were obtained prospectively after surgery in all 19 patients. A total of 12 patients developed active cytomegalovirus infection (serologic conversion confirmed by positive cultures) after transplantation, six of whom subsequently developed obliterative bronchiolitis. However, infection was clinically associated with pulmonary deterioration in only four of these patients, three of whom had cytomegalovirus pneumonitis. With the exception of obliterative bronchiolitis, no other permanent sequelae of cytomegalovirus infection were evident in this small group. Progressive obliterative bronchiolitis was also seen in four of the seven recipients who had no evidence of cytomegalovirus infection at any time. Although viral causes have been associated with obliterative bronchiolitis, the current data suggest that cytomegalovirus infection in the absence of pneumonitis does not appear to be a significant risk factor for obliterative broncholitis in cardiopulmonary transplant recipients. A larger group of patients will be required to ultimately establish the role of cytomegalovirus infection in this setting.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)267-272
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Heart Transplantation
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1986

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Transplantation


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