Cytomegalovirus In Pregnancy: What Is It And What Risks The Problem Gives The Baby

Most of the infected people does not present any symptoms, but CMV deserves attention and care

It is common for the woman, as soon as you find out you’re pregnant, spend worrying about the health of your baby. After all, you want to ensure that pregnancy occurs in the best possible way, without complications, and that the child is born totally healthy.

Many women end up hearing about, first, the Cytomegalovirus only at this stage of life and, therefore, it is common type concerns arise: what exactly is Cytomegalovirus? What risks he offers in pregnancy?Is there treatment? Below you know the answers to this and other questions about the matter.

What Is Cytomegalovirus?

Claudio Roberto Gonsalez, infectious disease, responsible for tracking service of healthcare-related Infections (SCIRAS) Villa Lobos Hospital, explains that Cytomegalovirus (CMV) is a virus that belongs to the family of herpes, very common among the human population in General. “About the 85% of 65 people have been infected by it,” he says.

Similar to herpes virus, CMV can also be long inactive in the body without causing serious problems.However, if contamination occurs during pregnancy, there are chances of bringing complications for the baby.

Symptoms Of Cytomegalovirus

Claudio the Gonsalez points out that most of the infected people does not present any symptoms. “The only way to know if he had the infection is through specific tests to detect it,” he says.

But, in General, between the main symptoms are, according to the infectious disease Gonsalez:


Adenomegalia (increase in lymph nodes, also called languages);

Asthenia (fatigue);

Abdominal pain;

Increase of spleen and liver.

“CMV can remain dormant (asleep) in the body after the first infection. In situations in which the immune system is weak, the virus can reactivate and cause recurrent infection call “adds infectious disease Gonsalez.

Like Cytomegalovirus Is Transmitted?

Claudio Gonsalez explains that the CMV is transmitted by direct contact. Between the transmission vehicles are:







Vaginal discharge;

Breast milk of an infected person.

“The transmission may occur in several situations, including through the use of glasses and cutlery of infected people, a kiss or even a sexual relationship,” adds infectious disease Gonsalez.

Risks Of Cytomegalovirus During Pregnancy

“My test was to have CMV. So I’m going to pass the virus to the baby? “, this is a common concern among pregnant women when it comes to Cytomegalovirus during pregnancy.

However, the proper answer is: it depends. A significant proportion of women already have antibodies to Cytomegalovirus before pregnancy – a result of them having been previously infected. And, as most of the infected people does not present any symptoms, it is very common that the woman didn’t know (except by blood test) If you have already had contact with the virus.

It is worth remembering that the CMV can remain dormant in the body after the first infection. And, in situations in which the immune system is weak, the virus can reactivate, provoking the so-called recurrent infection. However, fortunately, the risk of transmitting the virus to the baby in a recurrent infection is low (about 1 percent), and the risk of more serious complications is even smaller.

Claudio Gonsalez explains that, during pregnancy, the transmission can happen through the placenta or through secretions in the birth canal. Another possibility of contamination of baby is through breastfeeding. “In these conditions of transmission is very rare for babies to serious symptoms or sequelae”, says the infectious disease.

The big risk occurs in the case of premature infants, according to the infectious disease Gonsalez.

“Thus, in most of the cases, it is recommended that mothers have natural childbirth and mothers who breastfeed their babies, even if they are carriers of the CMV”, says Claudio Gonsalez.

The Professional adds that approximately 1% of newborns born with the infection. “The vast majority of babies with CMV does not present any symptoms at birth and, in most cases, the infection is harmless,” he says.

Some babies, however, are born with various problems due to CMV and can have sequels. “In other cases, apparently there is no complication at the beginning, but months or years later, a sequel, as hearing loss” adds the infectious disease.

However, points out that if Gonsalez infection occurs during pregnancy, the risk of transmission of the virus to the baby is much larger. “About 1 and 4% of women who have never had contact with the CMV feature the first infection during pregnancy (the so-called primary Cytomegalovirus). When this happens, the possibility of the baby being infected revolves around 30 to 50%. And there is a significant risk of the child present serious health problems, “he explains.

Treatment Of Cytomegalovirus During Pregnancy

Claudio Gonsalez explains that there is no specific treatment for CMV. “Only the use of drugs called symptoms to reduce symptoms without interfering in the evolution of the disease and transmission to the baby,” he says.

8 Tips To Avoid The Transmission Of Cytomegalovirus

As the transmission of Cytomegalovirus occurs in different ways – from simple contact with a glass in my kiss or infected during sexual intercourse – there is no simple method to avoid contagion.

But some basic care can help, conform the Gonsalez infectious disease:

  1. Wash your hands frequently.
  2. Wash your hands whenever you change diapers or have contact with the saliva of children: scrub your hands thoroughly with SOAP and water for at least 15 seconds.
  3. If you work directly with children, be extra careful: you should perfect hygiene, so wash your hands whenever you change a diaper or blow my nose.The increased frequency of infection is between 1 and 2 and a half years.
  4. Whenever you play with a small child, wash your hands before.
  5. Do not use the same utensils and cups of small children.
  6. Always wash utensils and cups before using them (regardless of who used them before).
  7. Use condoms when you have sex, especially if you are not in a serious relationship.
  8. Avoid oral sex, especially if you are not in a serious relationship.

It is worth remembering that, to prevent Cytomegalovirus or any other problem in pregnancy, a measure essential is to always be in touch with your Gynecologist/obstetrician and follow all the guidelines passed by him.