Cytomegalovirus (CMV) Infection
Charles Patrick Davis, MD, PhD
Dr. Charles "Pat" Davis, MD, PhD, is a board certified Emergency Medicine doctor who currently practices as a consultant and staff member for hospitals. He has a PhD in Microbiology (UT at Austin), and the MD (Univ. Texas Medical Branch, Galveston). He is a Clinical Professor (retired) in the Division of Emergency Medicine, UT Health Science Center at San Antonio, and has been the Chief of Emergency Medicine at UT Medical Branch and at UTHSCSA with over 250 publications.
- Cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection facts
- What is cytomegalovirus (CMV)?
- What causes cytomegalovirus infection?
- What are the risk factors for cytomegalovirus infection?
- How is cytomegalovirus transmitted?
- What are cytomegalovirus symptoms and signs?
- How do physicians diagnose cytomegalovirus infection?
- What is the treatment for cytomegalovirus infection?
- What is the prognosis of cytomegalovirus infection?
- What are complications of cytomegalovirus infection?
- Is it possible to prevent cytomegalovirus infection? Is there a CMV vaccine?
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Cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection facts
- CMV is a common virus (herpes virus family) and can infect anyone.
- CMV is spread by direct contact of body fluids such as saliva, blood, urine, semen, vaginal fluids, and breast milk.
- Most healthy people do not experience any symptoms when infected with CMV. However, in those with a weakened immune system, CMV can cause serious disease (blindness, hepatitis, or encephalitis, for example).
- As CMV spreads easily via any body fluid, breastfeeding, blood transfusions, organ transplants, and sexual contact are possible modes of transmission.
- Infants born to mothers infected with CMV during pregnancy may develop congenital CMV infection.
- Most healthy children and adults will recover from CMV infection without complications and do not require antiviral treatment.
- Health-care professionals diagnose CMV infections by culturing the virus from the infected individual or detecting antibodies CMV.
- Immunosuppressed individuals can develop CMV pneumonia, hepatitis, encephalitis, retinitis, seizures, and other problems.
- Antiviral treatments may improve the prognosis in some patients.
- There is no commercially available CMV vaccine.
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