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Volume 44, Number 6, December 2011

 Risk factors and outcomes of cytomegalovirus viremia in cancer patients: A study from a medical


Yung-Chih Wang, Ning-Chi Wang, Jung-Chung Lin, Cherng-Lih Perng, Kuo-Ming Yeh, Ya-Sung Yang, Chun-Hsiang Chiu, Feng-Yee Chang

Received: May 10, 2010    Revised: October 10, 2010    Accepted: October 22, 2010   


Corresponding author:


  • Division of Infectious Diseases and Tropical Medicine, Department of Internal Medicine, Tri-service General Hospital, National Defense Medical Center, Taipei, Taiwan, ROC
  • Centers for Disease Control, Department of Health, Taipei, Taiwan, ROC
  • Corresponding Author InformationCorresponding author. Centers for Disease Control, Department of Health, 9F, No. 6, Linsen South Road, Zhongzheng District, Taipei, Taiwan 10050, ROC.


Background and purpose: 

 Cytomegalovirus (CMV) is a pathogen and can cause life-threatening infection in the patients with malignancies. This study was conducted to investigate the risk factors and outcomes of CMV viremia in patients with malignancies.



 Data were collected with retrospective analysis from adults suffering from CMV viremia with underlying malignancies. A total of 107 patients were enrolled in a tertiary medical center in northern Taiwan from March 2008 to December 2009.



 Among the 107 patients who suffered with CMV viremia with an overall mortality rate of 56.1% (60/107), 75 patients (70.1%) had solid organ malignancies and 32 (29.9%) had hematological malignancies. Mechanical ventilation (p=0.048), leukocytosis (p=0.004), and lack of appropriate early treatment (p=0.011) were independent predisposing factors associated with higher mortality rate.



 CMV viremia predicts high mortality rate in cancer patients, especially in those with mechanical ventilation, leukocytosis, and lack of appropriate early treatment. Appropriate early antiviral therapy is recommended to improve outcomes.


Key words:

  CancerCytomegalovirusPolymerase chain reactionPre-emptive therapyViremia