What are the complications and consequences of CMV infection?
Headache, cough, or chest pain might sound like the normal flu. But it can be the symptoms of CMV infection, which is a chronic infection. This viral infection remains for life and can be fatal for certain people.
It infects over half of adults in the US. While it is not dangerous for healthy people; people with weak immune systems, children, and pregnant women are in the most danger. Because their body is not able to fight the virus and develop its complications which can damage body parts. Only the treatment of cytomegalovirus infection and good hygiene can reduce the symptoms and prevent its complications. Talk to a specialist for infectious diseases if you have any concerns.
Keep reading this article to learn about the consequences and complications of CMV infection.
Cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection is a type of herpes virus that is found in the environment and infects everyone. This virus can infect a person for life. While a healthy person does not experience any symptoms or minor symptoms like cough, headache, rash, etc. As their body can fight off the infection.
But for people who have weak immune systems, children, newborns, pregnant women, and people who go through organ, stem, or bone marrow transplants, this infection is fatal to them. They can experience symptoms like yellow skin, seizures, enlarged spleen, lung, or liver problems, etc. Timely treatment can help to manage these symptoms and further serious complications as there is no cure.
This virus can spread from person to person by coming into contact with body fluids like sweat, blood, saliva, tears, breast milk semen, or vagina fluids. If you can prevent these fluids and maintain good hygiene you can prevent this infection.
Complications of CMV infection
Its complications can depend on your overall health, your immune system, and when you got infected. It can be divided into healthy adults, newborns, and immunocompromised people.
Healthy adults and adolescents rarely develop any complications. They can get infected by an infected person, but often don’t develop any symptoms because their immune system strongly fights off their symptoms.
While in some cases, these are complications they can experience, such as:
- Blood clotting problems
- Ulcers in the gastrointestinal tract
- Hemolytic anemia
Complications can be very severe in newborns and even can lead to death as they haven’t developed their immune system fully to fight off the infection. Most newborns get this infection from their mothers through breast milk. If the infection affects the baby as a fetus, it’s called congenital CMV. In case of mild symptoms, the infant can survive with emergency medical treatment. But in severe cases, it is hard for the baby to survive even with medical care.
Complications that newborns can develop, such as:
- High fever
- Hearing loss
- Vision problems
- Blood clotting problems
- Lack of coordination
- Intellectual disability
- Swollen lymph glands
- Weakness in muscles
- Hemolytic anemia
The complications experienced by immunocompromised people can differ from person to person and depend on how damaged their immune system is. These people have a risk of getting this infection. These immunocompromised people can be the ones who suffer from an underlying condition like HIV/AIDS, leukemia, or any other chronic disease. Other than those people, people who have gone through kidney, liver, or bone marrow transplants also have weak immune systems.
The complications immunocompromised people can develop, such as:
- Vision loss
To prevent these serious complications, you need to manage the symptoms of this infection. Treatment is not required for healthy children and adults; their minor symptoms can easily be manageable by over-the-counter medications.
For immunocompromised people and newborns, antiviral medications are used to stop the reproduction of the virus, reduce its symptoms, and prevent its complications.
Pregnant women that can pass the infection to the fetus are given preventive hyperimmune globin treatment. So, that infection does not pass onto the fetus.
You can directly prevent the infection with its vaccine. But if you maintain good hygiene and prevent its transmission you can avoid this infection itself.
These are the ways to prevent infection and maintain good hygiene:
- Wash your hands often
- Avoid close contact with infected persons such as kissing, sexual contact, or sharing items, etc.
- Avoid contact with tears and saliva while taking care of a child.
- Be careful with disposable items.
- Avoid social situations especially when you are sick
- Practice safe sex
CMV infection is a type of herpes virus that can be dangerous for people who have weak immune systems, pregnant women, or newborns. There is no cure for this infection. Once you are infected, this infection is for life. While there is no cure, noticing the signs early and getting treatment from the doctor can reduce its symptoms and prevent complications so that you can lead a normal life.
Want to know about the tests that help to diagnose this infection?
Visit our team of Specialists for infectious diseases at Doral Health & Wellness at 1797 Pitkin Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11212. Call us on 718-DORAL-55 or 13473845690 to get a consultation from specialized doctors for infectious diseases.
If you are looking for treatment for this infection or other infectious diseases. Don’t worry, your search ends here. We have certified doctors of infectious diseases that can give you the best treatment for your infection. Many patients are happy with the treatment and live their lives peacefully. Join them by taking the treatment and enjoy your life!!!