The epidemiological, virological, and clinical data of 119 infants less than 30 days of age with enteroviral infection collected from January 1993 to November 1995 by the diagnostic virology laboratories were analyzed retrospectively. Ninety-eight isolates (83%) were obtained in the period of May 1 to December 1 with a peak in the summer months. Sixty-five percent (n = 78) of neonates became ill within the first 2 weeks of life. Echoviruses and Coxsackie virus type B were isolated most frequently, in 77 (65%) and 29 (24%) infants, respectively. Diagnosis was made by viral isolation from stool, nasopharyngeal swab, cerebrospinal fluid, and blood. One hundred four (87%) infants developed fever and 25 (21%) infants had diarrhea. A clinical diagnosis of sepsis was made in 42 (35%) infants and meningitis was diagnosed in 28 (24%) cases. The great majority of sepsis cases (36/86%) occurred in infants less than 15 days of age. In conclusion, non-polio enteroviruses (especially echoviruses) are a common and underreported cause of neonatal infection in the Netherlands in the summer months and are associated with a clinical diagnosis of sepsis or meningitis cases in the first 2 weeks of life in a high proportion of cases.
Copyright 2002 Wiley-Liss, Inc.