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primary herpes first trimester-what are the risks of harming my baby?
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primary herpes first trimester-what are the risks of harming my baby?

When I was 4 weeks pregnant (In Fact, it was the day after I found out I was pregnant!), I suffered my first primary hsv 2 outbreak: fever, malaise, a couple blisters, etc.
I was on valtrex for about a month after that. My doctor said the risk was low for my baby contracting herpes. I went off the valtrex after a month. Then I had another outbreak six weeks later on my hand (just an outbreak, no systemic symptoms as I had before). This was around the holidays when I had consumed a lot of peanut butter. My question is, "Was there enough time for my body to build enough antibodies during the second infection to protect the fetus at age 10 weeks?" I know the research and information says the risk of herpes in utero is 5% but I am wondering if I am at higher risk since I have suffered two episodes in early pregnancy?
I look forward to your responses.
9 Comments Post a Comment
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101028_tn?1348750963
how far into pregnancy are you at this point?

what testing did you have done initially to confirm hsv2?

grace
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Avatar_n_tn
5 1/2 months now. As soon as I had the outbreak at 4 weeks pregnant, blood tests confirmed I was experiencing a HSV 2 primary. My antibodies igg were only .2 but igm was positive. I not only had the blood test, but a culture was done for the sores and that was also positive for HSV 2. The doctors have not tested my blood since last year because they said I would automatically be producing antibodies from then until future. Thank YOU!
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101028_tn?1348750963
how many obvious ob's you have during pregnancy is meaningless as far as your baby's risk.  no worries there!

igm testing isn't accurate for herpes testing in adults but having a + lesion culture to confirm your status is what you needed for answers.  

no more reason to repeat herpes igg blood testing on you either.  

have you had your pregnancy ultrasound to make sure baby is developing normally? usually when you contract genital herpes during pregnancy, they just do a few extra ultrasounds.  Honestly odds are that if your baby had contracted hsv2 when you were infected that early into pregnancy, you would've miscarried but best to do the multiple ultrasounds just to be sure.

has your obgyn discussed taking herpes antivirals in the pregnancy doses for the last month of pregnancy?
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Avatar_n_tn
I did have a lot of extra ultrasounds in the beginning. Then I had a 12 week ultrasound, a down syndrome and a 20 week long ultrasound. All was normal. The 20 week ultrasound was unremarkable. They said it was perfect and it was an hour long so they measured and looked for everything:microenchapaly, hrdroencapahy, etc. Is there still a chance the baby could have caught something else (ie. blindness, lesions), or would it probably suffer from multiple birth defects? Yes, I was advised to start valtrex at 36 weeks. I am really lucky that in the first year I only had two outbreaks. I still can't figure out how the outbreak ended up on the back of my hand six weeks later though?
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101028_tn?1348750963
I'd breathe easy and stop worrying at this point :)  sounds like they have been doing everything that they should be !!

the valtrex dose for last month of pregnancy is 500mg twice a day.

best of luck with the rest of your pregnancy :)

grace
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Thanks Grace. More relaxed now, but still curious about something? I have one more question. I have read in several places that the HSV 2 antibodies transfer to the fetus via the placenta during the 28th week of gestation. I thought the antibodies would kick in sooner to help the fetus. Also, at 4 weeks after diagnosis, I immediately went on the valtrex. Would this have helped the fetus in any way? Thanks again!
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101028_tn?1348750963
nope, your body transfers all protective antibodies to your baby around 28 weeks to help protect it when born. These protective antibodies wear off over the first few months of life. If you breast feed, you continue to pass on antibodies to your baby to help protect it :)  

makes absolutely no difference if you go on valtrex or not.
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Another question please and thank you advance! :-) I just did the exact math instead of estimating and I was actually only 25 days when I had my first primary during pregnancy. Was the placenta even formed at this point in the pregnancy?
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101028_tn?1348750963
it really doesn't make a difference how far along you were either  unfortunately.  

really, don't worry yourself like this!!! spend your time looking forward to that beautiful baby that is going to be in your arms in a few short months :)  Your doctors sound like they are following up the way they need to, trust them and keep yourself busy with planning how to deal with this addition to your life :)  
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