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March 1980

Amantadine for Severe Influenza A Pneumonia in Infancy

Author Affiliations

Virology Laboratory Children's Hospital 219 Bryant St Buffalo, NY 14222; Division of Infectious Diseases Department of Pediatrics University of Colorado Medical Center and Veterans Administration Hospital Denver, Colo

Am J Dis Child. 1980;134(3):321-323. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1980.02130150075022

Influenza A virus may cause severe illness in infancy.1,2 Amantadine hydrochloride is effective as a prophylactic agent3,4 and is free of serious side effects5 when administered to older children. Although therapeutic field trials with amantadine have included children,6 we are unaware of any attempts to treat serious illness caused by influenza A in childhood, nor are there dosage recommendations for children under 1 year of age.

Report of a Case.—A 5-month-old girl was admitted to Colorado General Hospital on Dec 21, 1977, with fever, cough, and tachypnea. Physical examination revealed otitis media and a seborrheic skin rash. A chest roentgenogram revealed diffuse interstitial infiltrates. In ambient oxygen, the Pao2 was 38 mm Hg; the WBC count was 13,300/cu mm. She was treated with forced inspiratory oxygen (FIO2) of 40% and received broad-spectrum antibiotics for presumed bacterial pneumonia and sepsis until cultures of blood, spinal