Genital Herpes - What Happens
Newborns may be
infected with HSV at birth. This usually happens when a woman has her primary
outbreak close to the time of delivery and the baby is delivered through the
vagina. Usually in these cases the woman either does not have symptoms or is
unaware of symptoms.
A pregnant woman who has visible signs of an
outbreak near her due date may be tested for HSV. The risk of passing HSV to
the baby during delivery is much higher during a primary outbreak than a
If a genital herpes blister or sore is present
at the time of labor and delivery, whether it is part of a primary or recurrent
cesarean section is usually done. Cesarean section may
be recommended if a woman has tingling or pain (prodromal symptoms) suggesting
an impending outbreak.
immune systems are not fully developed,
newborns with herpes infection can have serious health
problems affecting many body systems. It may take up to 3 weeks after a newborn
is infected before he or she becomes ill.