Cytomegalovirus

Cytomegalovirus (CMV) is a common virus. Once infected, your body retains the virus for life. Most people don't know they have CMV because it rarely causes problems in healthy people. If you're pregnant or if your immune system is weakened, CMV is cause for concern. Women who develop an active CMV infection during pregnancy can pass the virus to their babies, who might then experience symptoms. For people who have weakened immune systems, especially people who have had an organ, stem cell or bone marrow transplant, CMV infection can be fatal. CMV spreads from person to person through body fluids, such as blood, saliva, urine, semen and breast milk. There is no cure, but there are medications that can help treat the symptoms. Most babies who have congenital CMV appear healthy at birth. A few babies who have congenital CMV who appear healthy at birth develop signs over time — sometimes not for months or years after birth. The most common of these late-occurring signs are hearing loss and developmental delay. A small number of babies may also develop vision problems. CMV is related to the viruses that cause chickenpox, herpes simplex and mononucleosis. CMV may cycle through periods when it lies dormant and then reactivates. If you're healthy, CMV mainly stays dormant.

 

 

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