My younger sister had a baby 2 months ago to the day. Just recently she confided in me that she has had herpes for the last 12 years. She unfortunately did not confide in her doctor and had the baby vaginally, while having a recurrent outbreak of a single lesion.
After she told me this I proceded to research online and am very scared for my nephew.
I need to know if he is still at risk for all of the awful symptoms that I read about? Is there a chance that the virus could still present?
I do recall her also saying that an internal fetal monitor was used which i read, increases the chances for infection.
I have informed her of the consequences and she is going to tell her pediatrician at the next doctors appt.
If the baby seems fine, and has seemed fine throughout the past two months, he likely escaped infection. In the later months of her pregnancy, she passed antibody to her baby, which likely helped to protect him. There are no reliable blood tests for herpes in babies (because they have their mom's antibody). You are correct, the internal monitor presented even more risk. She might be one very lucky mom, and her baby, one very lucky little boy.
Infection in babies whose mom's have herpes already is not common due to the protection based to the baby.
She can discuss this with her pediatrician, but likely there is nothing they will do at this point, except keep a close eye on his development over the next few years. I'm guessing he will be absolutely fine.
Terri, thank you for responding. Why would they need to watch him for a few years? Why wouldn't he have shown symptoms by now? Is it possible to test after... say a year, when maternal antibodies are no longer present?
It is very likely that he would have shown symptoms by now, yes.
The antibody test is also not good in children - shows many false positives, so I wouldn't suggest the child get tested. I think if he shows normal developmental patterns, he is fine.
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