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Volume 52, Number 2, April 2019

Molecular epidemiology and clinical features of rhinovirus infections among hospitalized patients in a medical center in Taiwan 

Huei-Min Hung, Shu-Li Yang, Chih-Jung Chen, Cheng-Hsun Chiu, Chen-Yen Kuo, Kuan-Ying A.Huang Tzou-Yien Lin, Yu-Chia Hsieh, Yu-Nong Gong, Kuo-ChienTsao, Yhu-Chering Huang


Background and purpose: 

Human rhinovirus (HRV) can cause severe illnesses in hospitalized patients. However, there are no studies regarding the prevalence of HRV infection, particularly the recently identified HRV-C, in hospitalized patients reported from Taiwan. 



Respiratory specimens collected from 487 hospitalized patients in designated wards between 2013 and 2014 in a medical center in northern Taiwan were retrospectively detected for HRV. Positive specimens were further determined for genotyping. Medical charts of the HRV-positive patients were reviewed retrospectively. 



Totally, 76 patients (15.6%) were HRV positive, of which 60 were pediatric patients. HRV-A was identified in 41 (54%) patients, HRV-B in 6 patients (7.9%) and HRV-C in 29 patients (38%). A total of 47 different genotypes were identified. HRV infections were predominant during fall and winter seasons. 21.1% were affected by HRV alone and 78.9% were found to be co-infected with other microorganisms. The detection rate of HRV in children (18.6%) was significantly higher than in adults (9.6%). Compared with pediatric patients, adult patients were significantly associated with underlying disease, Pneumocystis jirovesii pneumonia co-infection, a diagnosis of pneumonia, fatal outcome, hospital acquisition of HRV, antibiotics administration and requiring intensive care, while pediatric patients were significantly associated with viral co-infection. 



HRV was a common cause of respiratory tract infection in Taiwan, particularly in pediatric patients. Eighty percent of HRV-infected inpatients had other microorganisms co-infection. Adult patients were more likely to be associated with a severe respiratory disease entity. 


Key words:

Rhinovirus, Respiratory tract infection, Hospitalized patientsTaiwan