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Chapter 15 : Genital Herpesvirus Infections: Rationale for a Vaccine Strategy

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Genital Herpesvirus Infections: Rationale for a Vaccine Strategy, Page 1 of 2

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Abstract:

Studies of genital herpes in pregnancy have been a major source of new knowledge about the herpes simplex virus (HSV) infections of the genital tract and the epidemiology of HSV-1 and HSV-2 transmission by sexual contact. The transmission of HSV to infants usually results from exposure, during delivery, to maternal genital secretions that contain infectious virus. Since both HSV-1 and HSV-2 can cause genital herpes, neonatal infection can be due to either virus type, but most cases in the United States are due to HSV-2. Exposure to HSV at delivery does not lead inevitably to neonatal herpes. In fact, as is true for many other pathogens, most exposed infants escape Infection. Cervical infection is also much more likely in first-episode genital herpes as opposed to recurrent disease, permitting prolonged exposure during the birth process. Neonates infected with HSV have a very poor induction of active immunity to the virus. Cesarean delivery is recommended if lesions of genital herpes are present at the onset of labor. When a neonate is exposed to a first episode of maternal genital herpes, viral cultures of the eyes, throat, urine, stool, and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) are recommended at 48 h or when the exposure is identified. Higher antibody titers may also diminish morbidity even if the infant becomes infected, by enhancing the likelihood that the infection will be localized rather than systemic.

Citation: Arvin A. 1999. Genital Herpesvirus Infections: Rationale for a Vaccine Strategy, p 259-267. In Hitchcock P, MacKay H, Wasserheit J, Binder R (ed), Sexually Transmitted Diseases and Adverse Outcomes of Pregnancy. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555818210.ch15
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References

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