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February 24, 1989

Respiratory Syncytial Virus Pneumonia in a Human Immunodeficiency Virus-Infected Man

JAMA. 1989;261(8):1147. doi:10.1001/jama.1989.03420080061014

To the Editor. —  We would like to report a case of respiratory syncytial virus pneumonia in a patient infected with the human immunodeficiency virus. We feel it is important to emphasize that this virus may be as devastating a pathogen in adults as in infants and that both a rapid diagnosis and therapy are available.Respiratory syncytial virus is known as a cause of severe bronchiolitis, pneumonia, apnea, and respiratory failure in infants and children and is particularly lethal for children with abnormal cardiac or pulmonary status.1,2 A recent article3 has documented respiratory syncytial virus as causing death in 4 and requiring ventilation in 3 of 11 immuno-compromised adults. There is also a recent report4 of the successful use of ribavirin to treat respiratory syncytial virus pneumonia in an adult cardiac transplant recipient. None of these patients were infected with human immunodeficiency virus. The following case