You are here

Human T-Cell Lymphotropic Virus Type-1 (HTLV-1) A027

Last amended 
25 October 2018
Current RMA Instruments
Reasonable Hypothesis SOP
96 of 2018
Balance of Probabilities SOP
97 of 2018
Changes from previous Instruments

SOP Bulletin 205

ICD Coding
  • ICD-9-CM Codes: 079.51, 079.52
  • ICD-10-AM Codes: Z22.6
Brief description

HTLV-1 is a retrovirus.  In Australia the virus occurs in many Aboriginal populations.  Infection is asymptomatic in most people. Around 5% will have clinical manifestations, with a myelopathy being the most common feature.  The infection is associated with a risk of developing Adult T cell leukemia-lymphoma (covered by a separate SOP).

Confirming the diagnosis

Diagnosis requires the detection of HTLV-1 antibodies or antigens in blood or cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), culture of the virus from CSF lymphocytes, or detection of proviral DNA by polymerase chain reaction.

The relevant medical specialist is an infectious diseases physician.

Additional diagnoses covered by SOP
  • HTLV-1 infection
Conditions not covered by SOP
  • HTLV-2 infection
Clinical onset

Clinical onset in most cases will be when the virus is detected on testing. 

Clinical worsening

The condition will remain asymptomatic in most people. Treatment is not indicated for asymptomatic individuals.