Informative Articles and Independent, Unbiased Product Reports On Various Herpes Remedies

Babies With Herpes

Herpes is generally considered an adult disease that's sexually transmitted. But babies can get the infection too without it being sexually transmitted through sexual abuse. When babies contract the herpes virus, the condition is called neonatal herpes.

If babies get the virus, they contract it when they're born. The herpes virus most common in newborns is the herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV2), but neonatal herpes can also be caused by herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV1 also known as HHV1).

Transmission of the virus can come from mother or father and is usually done before, during or soon after the child is born. The virus doesn't often transmit before birth and my women who are positive carriers of the virus can give birth to healthy babies, even if they may not be able to give birth vaginally. The risk of transmission can be high with a vaginal delivery, especially if there's an outbreak of warts at the time of birth. The disease can be transmitted after birth by kissing the baby's face. This type of transmission is not common.

Herpes in babies can be difficult to treat, but treatment is necessary. The disease can cause significant damage to the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord), skin, eyes, lungs, liver or mouth.

Challenges With the Treatment Process

Once someone contracts herpes, regardless of their age, they'll have herpes for the rest of their lives. There is no cure for herpes. Someone can be a carrier of the virus without knowing it or showing symptoms. If a baby becomes infected, it's possible he or she may never show any symptoms all their childhood and adult years. It's also possible the he or she may suddenly have an outbreak later in life.

Pregnant women and their partners should get tested for the herpes virus because it's possible for one or both of them to be carriers without ever having a visible herpes-related sore of any type. The reason for this is that neonatal herpes needs to be found and treated quickly to prevent damage to the child.

If parents have not been tested and are carriers, then the child could become infected as well. If health problems arise, most doctors won't automatically assume the newborn has herpes. Valuable time could be wasted on unnecessary treatment and testing while physicians try to determine the cause of problems.

Medication Treatment and Therapy

In most cases, an antiviral medication acyclovir is used to treat herpes infections in newborns. One brand name of this type of antiviral medication is Zovirax. This medication is usually given to the infant by injection. If the baby already had an outbreak of some sort, the medication will not be able to undo any damage that has already been done by the virus. The medication can reduce the symptoms and possibly decrease the change of additional damage.

Unfortunately, a newborn baby's body is so fragile that a herpes infection can easily cause significant and irreversible damage to the child. And the diagnosis of herpes is too often made too late to prevent some damage, even though doctors are getting more and more efficient at diagnosing herpes in newborns.

When Acyclovir is Used

There are some symptoms and situations where acyclovir will be prescribed. But doctors don't come to this decision quickly and you will need to make sure you listen to the doctor's guidelines for use and make sure you do any follow-up.

The antiviral medication will be used if it's known that one or more of the parents are herpes carriers and if an infection is suspected. Signs of a possible infection include lesions on the newborn's skin. If one or both parents are known to have the virus, automatic testing will be done. If these laboratory tests indicate an infection, the medication will be prescribed. Doctors also prescribe the antiviral medication if the newborn's mother becomes infected with herpes for the first time during the pregnancy. During a first time (primary) genital herpes infection, the pregnant mother wouldn't have had a chance to develop antibodies to the virus that could be passed on to the child, so treatment is almost always necessary for the newborn.