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What is Congenital Cytomegalovirus?

June is designated as Congenital Cytomegalovirus Month and only 9 percent of women know what CMV is.

What is Cytomegalovirus?

Cytomegalovirus (sy·toe·MEG·a·low·vy·rus), or CMV, is a common virus and member of the herpes virus family that is generally harmless to people with healthy immune systems. Most people have been exposed to CMV at some point in their lives but have no idea because they are relatively healthy.

Symptoms

  • Cold-like
  • sore throat
  • fever
  • fatigue
  • swollen glands

Who it Does Effect?

CMV can cause serious problems for people who are immunocompromised due to organ transplants, HIV/AIDS infection, chemotherapy, and specific medications, such as glucocorticoids, cytostatics, antibodies, and drugs acting on immunophilins. It also causes severe diseases in babies who were infected before birth, congenital CMV.

Congenital CMV

One in 150 children in the U.S. is born with  CMV, making it the most common congenital viral infection.

Infection During Pregnancy

40 percent of women who contract CMV during pregnancy pass the virus to their fetuses. More children will have disabilities due to congenital CMV than other well-known infections and syndromes like Down Syndrome, Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, Spina Bifida, and Pediatric HIV/AIDS. About 90 percent of infants born with congenital CMV appear healthy at birth and the vast majority don’t have any visible symptoms or long-term issues. However, health problems or disabilities can sometimes present about two or more years after birth.

Prevent Infection

CMV is very common among healthy children one to three years of age because they are at high risk for contracting CMV or other viruses from their peers at this point. It’s commonly transferred through contact with the saliva of a person carrying an active CMV infection. 75 percent of toddler-aged kids have CMV in their saliva or urine. For pregnant women working with children, extra precautions should be taken and screening is available.

FOR YOUR OWN PEACE OF MIND, ARCPOINT LABS NATIONWIDE PROVIDES ACCURATE AND RELIABLE STD TESTING.  CONTACT YOUR NEAREST LOCATION TO LEARN MORE.

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