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01.12.2014 | Case report | Ausgabe 1/2014 Open Access

Journal of Medical Case Reports 1/2014

Protracted primary cytomegalovirus infection presenting as ileoanal pouchitis in a non-immunosuppressed patient: a case report

Journal of Medical Case Reports > Ausgabe 1/2014
Christian Rupp, Esther Herpel, Paul Schnitzler, Anna Zawierucha, Philipp Zwickel, Lukas Klute, Martina Kadmon, Wolfgang Stremmel, Annika Gauss
Wichtige Hinweise

Electronic supplementary material

The online version of this article (doi:10.​1186/​1752-1947-8-163) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

Competing interests

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.

Authors’ contributions

CR and LK acquired patient data. CR was involved in drafting the manuscript. AG acquired patient data and drafted the manuscript. EH was responsible for all histopathological analyses and provided the images. PS performed virological analyses. AZ, PZ, MK and WS were also actively involved in preparing the manuscript and critical appraisal. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.



Pouchitis often occurs after proctocolectomy and ileal pouch-anal anastomosis for ulcerative colitis. It is usually deemed idiopathic and commonly responds to antibacterial therapy. To date, only a few cases of cytomegalovirus pouchitis have been documented, and only a single report describes pouchitis in a case of assumed primary cytomegalovirus infection.

Case presentation

A 26-year-old Caucasian woman underwent proctocolectomy and ileal pouch-anal anastomosis for refractory ulcerative colitis and adenocarcinoma. After 28 months she developed bloody diarrhoea, abdominal pain, fever, nausea and general malaise suggesting severe pouchitis. Antibiotic treatment reduced humoral inflammation, but failed to resolve her fever. A pouchoscopy revealed distinct pouchitis, and cytomegalovirus infection was diagnosed from pouch biopsies by polymerase chain reaction as well as conventional histology and immunohistochemistry. The infection was confirmed in her blood by polymerase chain reaction and pp65 antigen test, and was clearly defined as the ‘primary’ infection by serial serological tests. Intravenous treatment with ganciclovir (10mg/kg body weight/day) led to resolution of symptoms and negative cytomegalovirus deoxyribonucleic acid and pp65 within a few days. When symptoms and laboratory evidence of cytomegalovirus infection recurred a few days after completing 20 days of therapy with ganciclovir and valganciclovir, a second course of ganciclovir treatment was initiated.


Cytomegalovirus infection of the ileoanal pouch is an important differential diagnosis of pouchitis even in non-immunosuppressed patients and can be treated with ganciclovir.

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