BMJ Case Reports 2018; doi:10.1136/bcr-2018-224625
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Pure red cell aplasia and HIV infection: what to suspect?

  1. Laura Marques2
  1. 1Serviço de Pediatria, Hospital do Divino Espírito Santo de Ponta Delgada, Ponta Delgada, Açores, Portugal
  2. 2Serviço de Pediatria, Departamento da Infância e da Adolescência, Centro Materno Infantil do Norte, Centro Hospitalar e Universitário do Porto, Porto, Portugal
  3. 3Serviço de Hematologia Laboratorial, Departamento de Patologia Laboratorial, Centro Hospitalar e Universitário do Porto, Porto, Portugal
  1. Correspondence to Dr Sara Oliveira Vaz, sara_vaz{at}
  • Accepted 2 April 2018
  • Published 21 April 2018


A 15-year-old boy of black ethnicity presented with anorexia, fatigue and weight loss for 3 months. The patient’s medical record included malaria infection at the age of 18 months and diagnosis of HIV infection at age 7 years treated with Tenofovir (TDF)/Emtricitabine (FTC)+ Efavirenz (EFV). The adolescent first went to a Congo’s Hospitalar Unit, where antiretroviral (ART) therapy was changed to TDF/FTC+ Lopinavir (LPV)/ritonavir (r) due to elevated HIV viral load and low CD4+ T lymphocytes. The compliance was irregular, and 1 month later he was admitted. The laboratory study revealed severe anaemia (haemoglobin (Hb) 4.1 g/dL), and he received multiple transfusions. Due to the absence of clinical improvement, parents brought him to Oporto’s Paediatric Hospital in Portugal. 

On physical examination he presented with pallor and weight loss. The rest of his physical examination findings were normal. The initial laboratory study showed normocytic normochromic anaemia …

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