Fertility Friday: CMV in Pregnancy

CMV (Cytomegalovirus) is actually the most common perinatal infection women can get in pregnancy. Some studies show that about 4% of all pregnant women will have an infection. Moms mostly do not realize they have had the infection,literally there are no symptoms at all in most cases, but CMV infection from pregnancy can be the cause of several medical complications in the newborn and childhood. CMV is probably the leading cause of deafness that is not due to a genetic cause. If you have an infection, there is not a treatment for CMV. Although antiviral therapies, such as those that we use to treat other herpes viruses (CMV is from the herpesvirus family) . There are not any guidelines that suggest routine testing requirements and in fact experts actually do not recommend routine screening of pregnant patients. Infections with CMV are over 90% harmless in pregnancy, so a good outcome is likely for women who do contract the disease in pregnancy. Certain signs on ultrasound, including the microcephaly that is gaining so much attention from Zika virus infection, or if your newborn fails 2 hearing tests are reasons for you to have blood testing for CMV. Since the transmission is primarily though body fluids, as Cytomegalovirus (CMV) has been cultured from  urine, blood, throat, cervix, semen, stool, tears, and even breast milk .Sexual exposure, close contact (family members), blood tissue or fluid exposure, are all possibly ways of contracting CMV and for specific risks please speak to your health care provider.But as with all infections hand washing and generally bathing itself is known to reduce your risk of infection!

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