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First reported case of transfusion-transmitted Ross River virus infection

Veronica C Hoad, David J Speers, Anthony J Keller, Gary K Dowse, Clive R Seed, Michael D A Lindsay, Helen M Faddy and Joanne Pink
Med J Aust 2015; 202 (5): 267-269. || doi: 10.5694/mja14.01522

We describe the first documented case of Ross River virus (RRV) infection transmitted by blood transfusion. The recipient had a clinically compatible illness, and RRV infection was confirmed by serological tests. The implicated donation was positive for RRV RNA. We discuss the risk to blood recipients and the implications for blood donation in Australia.

In May 2014, the Australian Red Cross Blood Service (the Blood Service) in Western Australia received a delayed notification from a donor who had developed fatigue and arthralgia 2 days after giving blood in March 2014 and was subsequently diagnosed with acute Ross River virus (RRV) infection (Box).

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  • Veronica C Hoad1
  • David J Speers2
  • Anthony J Keller1
  • Gary K Dowse3
  • Clive R Seed1
  • Michael D A Lindsay3
  • Helen M Faddy4
  • Joanne Pink4

  • 1 Australian Red Cross Blood Service, Perth, WA.
  • 2 PathWest Laboratory Medicine WA, Perth, WA.
  • 3 Department of Health Western Australia, Perth, WA.
  • 4 Australian Red Cross Blood Service, Brisbane, QLD.


Acknowledgements: 

We thank the recipient, the donor and the recipient's doctors for their input and permission to publish this information; and the Medical Service staff at the Blood Service and the Public Health Unit staff who assisted with following up the recipient. Australian governments fund the Blood Service to provide blood, blood products and services to the Australian community.

Competing interests:

No relevant disclosures.

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