Nonpolio enterovirus infection; Echovirus infection
Definition of ECHO virus
Enteric cytopathic human orphan (ECHO) viruses are a group of viruses that lead to and skin rashes.
Causes, incidence, and risk factors
Echovirus is one of several families of viruses that affect the gastrointestinal tract collectively called enteroviruses. These infections are common. In the US, they are most common in the summer and fall. You can catch the virus if you come into contact with stools contaminated by the virus, and possibly by breathing in air particles from an infected person.
Symptoms depend on the site of infection but may include:
Signs and tests
Because the illness is often mild and has no specific treatment, specific testing for echovirus is often not done.
ECHO virus infections tend to clear up on their own. No specific antiviral medications are available. Immune system treatment called IVIG may help patients with severe ECHO virus infections who have a weakened immune system.
Complete recovery without treatment is expected in patients who have the less severe types of illness. Infections of organs such as the heart (pericarditis and myocarditis) may cause severe disease and can be deadly.
David C. Dugdale, III, MD, Professor of Medicine, Division of General Medicine, Department of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine; Jatin M. Vyas, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor in Medicine, Harvard Medical School; Assistant in Medicine, Division of Infectious Disease, Department of Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc. – 9/15/2010