Varicella zoster virus (VZV) infection can cause temporary acquired protein S or C deficiency via cross reacting antibodies and consequently inducing a hypercoagulable state. A 6-year-old girl with a history of congenital cardiac disease was seen at an Emergency Department with acute chest pain, dyspnoea and fever, seven days after developing chicken pox. Diagnostic tests revealed massive infarction of the spleen, and a protein S and C deficiency. In addition, blood cultures revealed a Lancefield group A β-haemolytic streptococcus (GABHS). The patient recovered fully after treatment with low molecular weight heparin and antibiotics. In this patient, septic emboli caused splenic infarction. Thromboembolic complications should be suspected in children with VZV who present with acute symptoms, in particular if bacterial superinfection is found.
Nederlands Tijdschrift voor Geneeskunde
Department of Pediatrics

Teeninga, N., Willemze, A., Emonts, M., & Appel, I. (2011). [Acute illness following chicken pox: spleen infarction as a complication of varicella zoster infection]. Nederlands Tijdschrift voor Geneeskunde, 155(28). Retrieved from