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      Using Conjunctival Swab with Polymerase Chain Reaction to Aid Diagnosis of Cytomegalovirus Retinitis in AIDS Patients

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          Abstract

          Conjunctival swabs were used in combination with polymerase chain reactions (PCR) or virus culture to aid to confirm the diagnosis of cytomegalovirus (CMV) retinitis in AIDS patients. Based on ophthalmoscopic findings, 13 AIDS patients were diagnosed as having CMV retinitis and treated with systemic ganciclovir from January 1997 to December 1998. Nine of 13 AIDS patients with CMV retinitis were found to be positive for CMV DNA by using a conjunctival swab with PCR (CS-PCR). CMV was also isolated from the conjunctival swab culture in 2 AIDS patients with CMV retinitis. Following 1 month of systemic ganciclovir treatment, except for 1 patient who had disease progression and remained positive for CMV DNA by using CS-PCR, 12 patients were negative for CMV with a concordant lesion regression. Results of this study also indicate that this CS-PCR method is valuable for confirming the diagnosis of CMV retinitis and monitoring the ganciclovir effect on the treatment of CMV retinitis in AIDS patients.

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          Most cited references 4

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          Cytomegalovirus retinitis after initiation of highly active antiretroviral therapy.

          In previous natural history studies and clinical trials, AIDS-related cytomegalovirus (CMV) retinitis has occurred primarily in patients with absolute CD4 counts of 50 cells/microL or less (0.05 x 10(9)/L) at the time of diagnosis. We report five patients identified from our clinical practices who were diagnosed with CMV retinitis while their CD4 counts were above 195 cells/microL. We also analysed, based on CD4 counts, 76 AIDS patients with newly diagnosed CMV retinitis whose CD4 lymphocyte enumerations were done in laboratories that maintained certification in a common external quality control programme. 5-24 weeks before retinitis was diagnosed, all five patients had had absolute CD4 lymphocyte counts of less than 85 cells/microL, and 4-7 weeks before diagnosis, all five patients had started taking highly active antiretroviral treatment (HAART) regimens. Only one (4%) of 27 patients enrolled in the trial between July, 1995, and February, 1996, had an absolute CD4 count of more than 50 cells/microL, and none of 27 had an absolute CD4 count of more than 100/microL on entry to the trial. However, from March, 1996 (when indinavir and ritonavir were approved by the FDA for marketing in the USA), to August, 1996, 14 (29%) of 49 patients had CD4 counts of more than 50/microL and seven (14%) of 49 had a CD4 count of more than 100 cells/microL on entry. These findings suggest that the early immunological effects of HAART may not provide sufficient protection to prevent CMV retinitis in patients who have very low CD4 counts when therapy is started. Clinicians should note that CMV retinitis may now occur in patients who have CD4 counts of more than 100 cells/microL.
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            Oral Ganciclovir as Maintenance Treatment for Cytomegalovirus Retinitis in Patients with AIDS

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              Evaluation of Cytomegalovirus Retinitis Management

              Cytomegalovirus (CMV) is the most common pathogen of opportunistic viral infections in patients with the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome. In this study, we assessed the therapeutic outcome of our treatment regimen of CMV retinitis by analysing retrospectively 33 consecutive patients. The clinical utility of CMV cultures from blood, urine and throat specimens obtained at the time of diagnosis was additionally evaluated. Treatment started with ganciclovir (GCV) therapy. In case of relapsing retinitis, re-induction therapy was initiated, and if unsuccessful, the patient was switched to foscarnet. Patients developing resistant retinitis despite foscarnet therapy were offered a GCV-foscarnet combination therapy. Under primary GCV therapy, the median first stable interval of the whole group was 202 days (mean 238 days). Twenty-five out of 33 CMV retinitis patients (76%) responded to initial GCV therapy. Eleven of these patients showed relapsing retinitis that could be stabilised in 3 patients solely with combination therapy. Eight patients did not respond to primary GCV therapy. Three of them improved with foscarnet, but 3 patients did not respond to either treatment. In 18 (56%) out of 32 patients, CMV cultures yielded positive results. Considering our series, we may conclude that in the majority of patients primary or secondary viral resistance can be overcome by dose increase, switching to the alternative drug or a combination therapy.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                OPH
                Ophthalmologica
                10.1159/issn.0030-3755
                Ophthalmologica
                S. Karger AG
                0030-3755
                1423-0267
                2000
                April 2000
                15 March 2000
                : 214
                : 2
                : 126-130
                Affiliations
                aDepartment of Ophthalmology, bSection of Infectious Disease, Department of Internal Medicine and cSection of Clinical Virology, Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology, Veterans General Hospital-Taipei and National Yang-Ming University, and dInstitute of Biology and Anatomy, National Defense Medical Center, Taipei, Taiwan, Republic of China
                Article
                27481 Ophthalmologica 2000;214:126–130
                10.1159/000027481
                10720917
                © 2000 S. Karger AG, Basel

                Copyright: All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be translated into other languages, reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, microcopying, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher. Drug Dosage: The authors and the publisher have exerted every effort to ensure that drug selection and dosage set forth in this text are in accord with current recommendations and practice at the time of publication. However, in view of ongoing research, changes in government regulations, and the constant flow of information relating to drug therapy and drug reactions, the reader is urged to check the package insert for each drug for any changes in indications and dosage and for added warnings and precautions. This is particularly important when the recommended agent is a new and/or infrequently employed drug. Disclaimer: The statements, opinions and data contained in this publication are solely those of the individual authors and contributors and not of the publishers and the editor(s). The appearance of advertisements or/and product references in the publication is not a warranty, endorsement, or approval of the products or services advertised or of their effectiveness, quality or safety. The publisher and the editor(s) disclaim responsibility for any injury to persons or property resulting from any ideas, methods, instructions or products referred to in the content or advertisements.

                Page count
                Figures: 5, References: 21, Pages: 5
                Categories
                Original Paper · Travail original · Originalarbeit

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