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December 1969

Neonatal Herpetic Infection: Report of Two Premature Infants Treated With Systemic Use of Idoxuridine

Author Affiliations

Madison, Wis; Atlanta
From the Department of Pediatrics, Jackson Clinic and University Hospitals, Madison, Wis (Dr. Tuffli), and the Department of Pediatrics and Preventive Medicine, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta (Dr. Nahmias).

Am J Dis Child. 1969;118(6):909-914. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1969.02100040911018

ALTHOUGH the prognosis in herpes simplex encephalitis remains unclear in view of problems inherent in providing laboratory confirmation of diagnoses,1 reports in current literature2-8 indicate the disease is severe, often fatal, frequently leaving survivors with neurological sequelae.

Until recently, treatment consisted largely of supportive care, with occasional administration of γ-globulin or hyperimmune plasma. During the past three years, several authors described beneficial results in herpes simplex encephalitis with systemic use of idoxuridine (5-iodo-2′-deoxyuridine).8-13 However, no one has reported experience with systemic use of idoxuridine in the premature infant. Partridge and Millis14 used intravenously administered idoxuridine in a combined, five-day course of intermittent and continuous infusion in a newborn term infant with systemic herpes simplex. The infant received a total dose of 580 mg/kg and showed clinical improvement, with no toxicity noted. The infant died later, probably from the effect of secondary bacterial infection.

This report presents

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