Cytomegalovirus: symptoms, treatment and prevention
Good day, dear readers! Do you know what is the cytomegalovirus? This is one of the herpes viruses, which infected more than 50% of the adult population of our planet. Perhaps you are also one of them. This disease with the wrong treatment can cause serious complications.
Want to know what and who is threatening cytomegalovirus? Then you should read this article that tells about the mysterious herpesvirus everything.
What is cytomegalovirus?
Let’s start with the basics — find out what it is. This is one of the herpes virus, as mentioned above, is quite common today.
The virus infected 15-20% of adolescents and over 50% of people over the age of 30 years.
Found this viral pathogen relatively recently — in 1956, so have not studied.
A feature of the pathology that provokes the cytomegalovirus, is the lack of symptoms. Rather, the characteristics it has in early development, but they are often confused with the flu or SARS.
The most dangerous is herpes cytomegalovirus is for two groups of people on our planet. Want to know for whom exactly? To this question we will be back a little later, but for now let’s examine the transmission path in order to know if you get infected with this infection.
Transmission of cytomegalovirus
In what ways is spreading this herpes virus? To be infected with the insidious infection through different types of human biological fluids:
- the semen and vaginal during sex;
- maternal breast milk;
In children the illness is spread through shared toys and unwashed hands. Simply put, while playing in a kindergarten, children can alternately drag the same toy in the mouth, the virus provocateur infection will be transmitted with saliva, which will remain on the toy.
In addition, infection is possible from mother to child during pregnancy (vertical transmission is not considered to be the most common).
Also the virus can be transmitted during breast-feeding or follow-up care (if the mother is a bearer of will eat with the child from one dish to share hygiene items).
It should be noted that CMV is not considered a very contagious. Why? It’s his fragile before the influence of external environmental factors. He quickly dies outside the human body.
To pick up, takes a long time to be with suffering, which, moreover, should have such negative phase (occurs immediately after incubation or with the weakening of immunity).
Adults mainly infected during sex as it is prolonged close contact, during which there are different biological fluids.
Most of the children touches the herpes virus is still in the womb or during nursing infected milk (if the mother got an infection after giving birth).
Symptoms of cytomegalovirus infection
People carrying the virus may not even know about its presence in the body, as the infection proceeds, most suffering from asymptomatic.
Symptoms may occur only after infection at an early stage of development.
The initial stage before the virus should pass the incubation period (to learn the body to settle down and reproduce), which lasts from 20 to 60 days.
Why a standard course of the disease, triggered by CMV, has no symptoms? The fact is that a healthy immune system can suppress the virus, which they would not be active.
After an incubation period of provocateur infection definitely will know about your presence, but then the immune protective system of the human body immediately will kill.
The first symptoms after a period of incubation, almost all confused with the common cold or flu. Here are the most common signs of primary CMV infection insidious:
- the increase in body temperature (values may be different, but often low-grade);
- chills and fever (sick throws then cold, then hot);
- intoxication (nausea to vomiting, dehydration, irritability, loss of appetite, upset stomach of a different nature);
- fatigue (no particular reason the person is sleepy, he was listless and unable to perform their standard daily work);
- painful appearance (pale skin and even turn gray, there are dark circles and bags under the eyes, the facial expression becomes dull and tired);
- severe headache (the arterial pressure often rises).
These symptoms are called mononucleotides syndrome. It usually occurs within 20-60 days after infection and lasts from two weeks to 1.5 months. Mononucleotides syndrome does not occur in all people.
In most cases it is yourself, then bleating feels completely healthy. Sometimes cytomegalovirus infection occurs without the above syndrome, and in other cases it becomes severe and more diverse threat signs.
A severe form of cytomegalovirus infection: cytomegalovirus who threatens maximum?
The most dangerous of the above disease is for people with a weakened critical immune system and for women during pregnancy.
The immune system is often weakened in children due to chronic infections and also in adults, due to certain hidden infections such as HIV.
If the immune system becomes critically weakened, it will not be able to protect the wearer from viruses, so for a cytomegalovirus infection in such a person will be more bright and noticeable (in some cases fatal):
- deteriorating eyesight;
- occurs atypical pneumonia;
- affects the Central nervous system and brain;
- suffer organs-components of the digestive tract;
- in especially severe cases can even be fatal.
If the infection happens during pregnancy, the more likely it will harm the baby.
The child born with CMV can develop different types of complications such as: abnormalities in the Central system of nerves; the backlog in intellectual and physical development; mortality at birth.
Pregnancy and cytomegalovirus: risk and prognosis
Herpes infection with cytomegalovirus during pregnancy in 50% of cases leads to intrauterine infection of the baby. It is therefore important to test for the presence of antibodies to the foregoing, the herpes virus in women even before pregnancy.
90% of babies infected in utero infection occurs as well as adults (without symptoms) and does not cause complications. 10% of babies after birth, there are signs of infection, such as:
- deafness and loss of vision.
The most unfavorable period for infection of a woman who bears a child — the third trimester. Infection are more prone to women with a weakened immune system and different types of chronic infectious disease which was not treated promptly or not treated.
Diagnosis how to get tested for the presence of CMV in the body?
Diagnosis is carried out with the help of modern blood tests. In the blood are searched for IgG and IgM for CMV. What does it mean?
Analysis of IgG helps to find antibodies to the virus in different sample taken from a patient. Often blood is taken, as it is most informative. Ig is the acronym for human immunoglobulin. Called immunoglobulin a protective protein, which is secreted by immune system in response to viral integration.
The letter G indicates the type of immunoglobulin. By the way, are the types A, M, D, and E. If the body has not yet encountered the virus, the above study did not find antibodies to them. In this case, the test result will be negative.
If the test was positive, then it is safe to say that the cytomegalovirus in the body was found. And what is the norm? Norm is the absence of antibodies to cytomegalovirus.
How informative and precise the analysis of IgG? You can be sure of its accuracy because every virus triggers the secretion of specific antibodies in our body.
What if the test result is false positive? Then you have to pass additional PCR analysis. It is more expensive since it appeared relatively recently and is considered advanced.
Treatment of cytomegalovirus infection: necessary or not?
If the immune system in a person infected by the herpes virus that is functioning properly, and no symptoms of infection, then the treatment it is not required.
By the way, a specific treatment against cytomegalovirus is not yet invented, since the viral pathogen are not well understood. Treatment is needed only during exacerbation, which may occur during pregnancy or in the weakening of the immune system.
Treatment of cytomegalovirus infection in any case be carried out independently. No folk remedies will not help to get rid of the virus, so do not even try to use them.
Moreover, to get rid of this pathogen is impossible, since drugs are against him not yet invented.
If you happen exacerbation, which shows the analysis of IgG, ill assigned to standard antiviral therapy, which is complemented by medications to strengthen the immune system.
The purpose of therapy is to weaken and deaden the virus so he didn’t bother and was not transferred to others. People in the period of exacerbation may not experience any symptoms or periodically suffer from mild discomfort resembling the flu.
It is important to understand that the virus in the period of activity can be transmitted to others. Therefore, if the tests showed a worsening, then we need to try to interact with people, especially pregnant women and children. Treatment of acute lasts less than 2 weeks.
Treatment of pregnant women with acute cytomegalovirus infection is carried out in a hospital. The same applies to the treatment of newborns with complications. Drugs and dosages are selected individually.
Treatment of people with weakened immune systems (for example, HIV) is also individual and depends on many factors, such as the type of complications, immune status.
In foreign countries practiced the transplantation of healthy organs to such people. The procedure gives good results.
Modern medicine does not stand still and are constantly inventing new tools to combat incurable viral infections.
At the moment we are active searches of the drug, is able to drive a CMV herpes from the body completely.
High hopes for glizirethinic acid, which is extracted in a special way from the roots of licorice. In the near future, scientists promise to start testing drugs on the basis of glizirethinic acid.
Specific prevention does not exist, however there are some recommendations that can protect against infection. For example, if you are going to get pregnant, be sure to leave the above-described antibody in advance.
If you were diagnosed with the infection in remission, the pregnancy is allowed. If the infection is detected in the active stage, the pre-treatment.
Antiviral treatment during pregnancy is not possible, as it can threaten the fetus because of the high toxicity.
To protect your baby from CMV infection insidious, explain to him why it is impossible to drag in other people’s mouth toys, stuff, etc. Teach him to observe personal hygiene and wash your hands.
Don’t let strangers too closely in contact with the child (kissing, etc.), especially if they have obvious signs of a cold or herpes infection.
Having sex, use protection with barrier contraceptives. It will not protect from infection 100%, but will significantly reduce the risk of infection.
The fact that CMV is not only transmitted through semen and vaginal, but also through saliva, so it can get into the body even after the kiss.
That’s all the information on the cytomegalovirus and infection that it provokes. I hope this article was informative and answered all your questions.
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The author: Elena Smirnova (dermatologist)