J Pediatr Infect Dis 2012; 07(01): 045-048
DOI: 10.3233/JPI-2012-0342
Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart – New York

Rotavirus infection presenting with encephalopathic state and vasculitis: Further evidence that rotavirus causes systemic illness

Siba P. Paul
a  Department of Pediatrics, Great Western Hospital, Swindon, UK
b  Department of Pediatrics, St Richard's Hospital, Chichester, UK
David C.A. Candy
b  Department of Pediatrics, St Richard's Hospital, Chichester, UK
› Author Affiliations

Subject Editor:
Further Information

Publication History

29 February 2012

09 March 2012

Publication Date:
28 July 2015 (online)


Apart from causing the majority of episodes of gastroenteritis in children, rotaviruses can also cause systemic illnesses such as encephalitis, hepatitis, and acute haemorrhagic edema. Infectious rotavirus particles have been demonstrated in the blood and CSF and more associations are to be expected. This case series present a new association of encephalopathic state and vasculitic rash in 3 children who were found to have rotavirus on stool testing. Rotavirus can mimic serious bacterial infections including meningococcaemia and meningitis and any child presenting with vasculitic rash, encephalopathy and gastroenteritis should have a stool sample examined for rotavirus. Awareness of this association will help paediatricians provide a definitive diagnosis for some children presenting with signs of meningococcal sepsis who test positive for rotavirus.