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Are herpes infections of the eyes a greater threath to my newborn?

By Anonymous April 21, 2012 - 1:05pm
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I have genital herpes and have been tking Acyclovir for several years with pretty good success. I am 8 months pregnant and I've had two outbreaks, one after the stress of loosing a baby (vanishing twin), and the other after a recent painful experience with a degenerative fibroid. I am very worried about protecting my baby from the virus once he is born. I always have intense itching in my eyes prior to a genital outbreak. Because I have allergies that casue the same symptoms it took me a while to make the connection. I have never had any other symptoms of herpes infection of my eyes. I have read that the genital herpes virus cannot be trasmitted to my baby by touch, but is the same true for herpes infection of the eye? Im not sure if my eyes are infected, but if they are, does this put my newborn at a greater risk of catching herpes from me?

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Hi Anonymous, 

It sounds like you may not only have genital herpes but you may also have Ocular herpes (usually caused by Herpes simplex type 1-- the same as cold sores). Keep in mind that sometimes when you are experiencing an outbreak you can spread herpes from one body part to another. 

As a neonatal nurse, I can only stress the importance of good hygiene-- not only for yourself but for anyone who comes near your newborn baby. Whenever you have an outbreak it is extremely important that you wash your hands thoroughly prior to touching your little one. A good way to form this habit is by always washing your hands before touching any infant regardless of an outbreak. Practice good hygiene and always ensure that anyone who comes near your baby always has clean hands.

Good luck and congratulations!


April 21, 2012 - 3:08pm
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