New Delhi: A Delhi hospital on Tuesday (June 29, 2021) informed that they have found the first case of Cytomegalovirus (CMV) related rectal bleeding in the coronavirus patients.
The cases were found in the Sir Ganga Ram Hospital in the national capital and are the first report from India of CMV related rectal bleeding in COVID-19 immunocompetent patients.
"During the second wave of the COVID-19, in April-May 2021, we have seen five cases of CMV infection in otherwise immunocompetent patients with COVID-19. These patients presented with pain abdomen and bleeding in stools. These patients presented with a mean of 20 to 30 days after the diagnosis of COVID-19," said Prof Anil Arora, Chairman, Institute of Liver Gastroenterology and Pancreaticoblliary Sciences, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital.
He added that none of them had other predisposing immunosuppressed states accounting for the viral infection.
Prof Arora said that the cases were from Delhi-NCR in the age group of 30-70 years. While four had complained of a lower gastrointestinal bleed, that is bleeding in stools, one patient had presented with intestinal obstruction.
He further stated that two of them also had a massive bleed with one requiring emergency lifesaving surgery in the form of removal of the right side of the colon and one of them succumbed due to massive bleeding and severe COVID-19 chest disease.
"Other three patients were successfully treated with antiviral therapy with ganciclovir," Prof Anil Arora said.
"In such cases of high index of suspicion and timely intervention in the form of an early diagnosis and effective antiviral therapy can save many precious lives," said Dr Praveen Sharma of Sir Ganga Ram Hospital.
This is to be noted that the Cytomegalovirus reportedly exists in 80 to 90 % of the Indians in asymptomatic form. Clinical presentation with symptoms secondary to CMV is usually seen in patients whose immunity is compromised.