In the heading «Ask an expert a question», our reader Ann asks:
«The child was infected with chickenpox in kindergarten. And I’m 20 weeks pregnant. I myself have not had chickenpox and now I am very worried that I will get infected and harm the unborn child. Is chickenpox dangerous for the fetus?»
In order not to get infected with chickenpox, you need to be examined for infections 3 months before conception. The analysis will show whether there are antibodies in the body to the causative agents of measles, rubella and chickenpox. If there are no antibodies, it is necessary to vaccinate against infections. At the same time, it takes time for immunity to form. Therefore, pregnancy can be planned only 3 months after vaccination.
If pregnancy has occurred, and there are no antibodies to the pathogens of chickenpox, it is no longer possible to get vaccinated. But you can urgently, within 72 hours, vaccinate a healthy child if he has been in contact with patients.
If the child is already ill, if possible, move him to a separate room, and entrust the care of the patient to her husband or grandmothers. Ventilate the room more often, do a wet cleaning every day. Allocate your dishes to the child, and wash his things separately.
Is chickenpox dangerous for pregnant women
Intrauterine infection with chickenpox cannot occur, but it is possible to affect the fetal structures. In particular, the risk of damage to the central nervous system is high. At all stages of intrauterine development, any viral infections primarily affect the cerebral cortex. Viruses are especially dangerous in the first trimester.
If it was not possible to protect yourself from chickenpox, contact your doctor immediately. Predicting risks, doctors focus on the intensity of symptoms. The easier the disease is in a pregnant woman, the less reason to fear for the health of the unborn child.