Human Metapneumovirus Clinical Presentation

Updated: Aug 06, 2021
  • Author: Varvara Probst, MD; Chief Editor: Pranatharthi Haran Chandrasekar, MBBS, MD  more...
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Human metapneumovirus (hMPV) is believed to be transmitted via contaminated secretions such as saliva, droplets, or large-particle aerosols. Infection with hMPV causes a broad spectrum of respiratory illnesses, from mild upper respiratory infection to bronchiolitis, and pneumonia. The clinical symptoms of hMPV infection are similar to those seen with RSV infection and the most common include fever, cough, rhinorrhea, followed by dyspnea, tachypnea, chest retractions, and wheezing. [66]   hMPV pneumonia does not have a significantly different clinical presentation from other pathogens associated with pneumonia. The average duration of fever during hMPV infection is 10 days. [51] Hospitalization, supplemental oxygen, and mechanical ventilation may be necessary in severe hMPV infections. [8, 9]  

While bronchiolitis, with or without pneumonia, is the most common presentation of hMPV illness, other reported syndromes have included asthma exacerbation, otitis media, pneumonitis, flulike illness, community-acquired pneumonia, and COPD exacerbation. [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7]