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Volume 39, Number 2, April 2006

Effect of regular intravenous immunoglobulin therapy on prevention of pneumonia in patients with common variable immunodeficiency

Zahra Pourpak, Asghar Aghamohammadi, Leyla Sedighipour, Abolhasan Farhoudi, Masoud Movahedi, Mohammad Gharagozlou, Zahra Chavoshzadeh, Leyla Jadid, Nima Rezaei, Mostafa Moin
Department of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, Children Medical Center, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, and Immunology, Asthma and Allergy Research Institute, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, IR Iran

Received: August 1, 2005    Revised: September 10, 2005    Accepted: September 29, 2005   


Corresponding author:

Zahra Pourpak, M.D, PhD, Immunology, Asthma and Allergy Research Institute, Children Medical Center, No.62, Gharib St, Keshavarz Blv, P.O.Box 14185-863, Tehran, IR Iran. E-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it


Background and purpose: 

Common variable immunodeficiency (CVID) is a primary immunodeficiency disorder, which presents with hypogammaglobulinemia and recurrent bacterial infections. Patients with CVID have frequent and severe episodes of pneumonia. The standard intravenous immunoglobulins (IVIG) therapy has led to the reduction of pulmonary infections in these patients. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of IVIG treatment in reducing the incidence of pneumonia in patients with CVID.




Twenty six Iranian patients with CVID whose diseases had been diagnosed at the Children Medical Center and had received regular IVIG for at least 9 months were selected. The numbers of episodes of pneumonia and hospital admissions were documented before and during treatment with IVIG.




Of 26 patients with CVID, 80.5% had experienced pneumonia at least once before receiving immunoglobulin and 88.5% required hospital admission. After starting treatment with IVIG (mean treatment period, 41.5 ± 35.4 months), the annual incidence of pneumonia significantly decreased from 80.5% to 34.6% (p=0.0017), and the rate of hospitalization from 88.5% to 46% (p=0.0025) .The incidence of pneumonia requiring treatment or hospitalization fell from 3.4 to 0.7 per year (p<0.0005).




Regular IVIG therapy can significantly reduce the incidence of pneumonia and hospital admission due to infections in patients with CVID.



Key words:

Common variable immunodeficiency, intravenous immunoglobulins, pneumonia



J Microbiol Immunol Infect 2006;39:114-120.