Do pregnant women and mothers ever run out of reasons to worry about their kid's health? In addition to all of the usual fears, you may also want to keep an eye out for symptoms of CMV, which may affect persons with limited immune systems (such as fetuses and newborn babies). Of course, diagnosis is only half the battle. What is the treatment for CMV, and how can parents protect their children from this virus?
According to the Mayo Clinic, CMV,or cytomegalovirus, is a common type of virus that can affect just about anybody. You may have it right now and not even know it. A relative of the herpesvirus, CMV is spread easily through saliva and sexual contact, as explained by the U.S. National Library of Medicine. Although this may sound scary, CMV rarely causes any symptoms or problems; however, pregnant women and very young children may need to beware of it, as the Mayo Clinic further noted. For the majority of people, CMV is not a big reason for concern.
If you are pregnant or have a newborn, however, then you may want to be on the lookout for CMV symptoms. As noted in KidsHealth, children's symptoms of CMV may include headache, fever, achey muscles, and fatigue. In other words, it can look like a lot of infections, so you'll need a trip to the doctor for verification. In pregnant women, potential fetal signs of CMV may include low levels of amniotic fluid and enlarged brain tissue, and a amniocentesis can be done to look for these signs, according to the American Pregnancy Association.
Treatment for CMV may vary greatly depending on your situation. Healthy children and adults, for example, may not even require CMV treatment, according to the Mayo Clinic. Although there is no cure for the virus, your immune system will likely take care of it. However, children with weakened immune systems infected by CMV may be given the medication ganciclovir, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics. Although it will not cure the infection, the anti-viral drug ganciclovir may slow the CMV virus's growth, according to WebMD. Treatment for pregnant women may be more tricky. The exact effects of Ganciclovir on pregnant women are not yet known, so it is only recommended when potential benefits outweigh risks, according to Drugs.com. In this case, it's a good idea to work with your doctor to find an antivial treatment that may be more fitting for your situation. Whatever the treatment, hopefully both you and your child will be free from CMV's symptoms very soon.