OUR INSTITUTES: CANCER | HEART | NEUROSCIENCE | ORTHOPAEDICS
 
 

Pediatric Health Library :: Pediatric Health Library Topics
Share |
Printer Friendly
HIGH-RISK PREGNANCY :: Maternal and Fetal Infections

Herpes

What is herpes (HSV)?

Genital herpes can be spread to the baby during delivery, if a woman has an active infection at that time. Herpes is a sexually transmitted disease caused by the herpes simplex virus (HSV). Herpes infections can cause blisters and ulcers on the mouth or face (oral herpes), or in the genital area (genital herpes). HSV is a life-long infection.

Symptoms of HSV may include painful blisters or open sores in the genital area, which may be preceded by a tingling or burning sensation in the legs, buttocks, or genital region. The herpes sores usually disappear within a few weeks, but the virus remains in the body and the lesions may recur from time to time.

It is important that women avoid contracting herpes during pregnancy, because a first episode during pregnancy creates a greater risk of transmission to the newborn. Women may be treated with an antiviral medication such as acyclovir if the disease is severe. Genital herpes can cause potentially fatal infections in babies if the mother has active genital herpes (shedding the virus) at the time of delivery. Cesarean delivery is usually recommended for active genital herpes. Fortunately, infection of an infant is rare among women with genital herpes infection.

Protection from genital herpes includes abstaining from sex when symptoms are present, and using latex condoms between outbreaks.

Click here to view the
Online Resources of High-Risk Pregnancy

GR_ATP

It is important to remember the health information found on this website is for reference only not intended to replace the advice and guidance of your healthcare provider. Always seek the advice of your physician with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your physician or 911 immediately.
PEDIATRIC HEALTH LIBRARY
HIGH-RISK PREGNANCY HOME
TOPIC INDEX
CONDITIONS
RESOURCES
GLOSSARY
RELATED SPECIALTIES:
NEONATOLOGY & PERINATOLOGY
RELATED LINKS:
spacer

Facebook  Twitter  Pinterest  Instagram  Foursquare  LinkedIn  YouTube  RSS  CHOC Blog

US News     CAPE Award   Magnet      Beacon Award      Most Trusted Brand     Leapfrog

chocChildren's Hospital of Orange County | UCI University of California, Irvine

Children's Hospital of Orange County is affiliated with UC Irvine Healthcare and UC Irvine School of Medicine

CHOC Children's - 1201 W La Veta Ave, Orange, CA. Phone: 714-997-3000. .