A 15-month-old boy treated with amoxicillin and clavulanic acid therapy for 8 days was admitted for persistent gastroenteritis and fever. He received ceftriaxone for pneumonia modified on day 4 for cefotaxime and josamycin due to extension of alveolar lesions. On day 7, persistent fever and worsened respiratory distress led to addition of rifampicin. The child was then admitted to an intensive care unit. A hemophagocytic syndrome was suspected based on clinical signs and laboratory findings and confirmed by cytological examination of bone marrow. Adenovirus type 7 was identified by polymerase chain reaction and culture of bronchoalveolar fluid. Prognosis was good within 3 weeks. B and T immunologic evaluations were normal 5 months after the infection. This case of severe adenovirus pneumonia was associated with hemophagocytic syndrome in a child without identified primary immunodeficiency. Adenovirus type 3 and 7 are most frequently responsible for severe or fatal respiratory infections.
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