New conception recommendations for Zika and CMV

New conception recommendations for Zika and CMV

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued new recommendations for women hoping to get pregnant after possible exposure to Zika virus.

Most people infected with Zika virus won’t even know that they have the disease because they won’t have symptoms. However, if women have traveled to an area where Zika has been reported and also have symptoms of Zika—including fever, rash, joint pain, muscle pain, headache or conjunctivitis (red eyes)—they are encouraged to wait at least 8 weeks until they try to conceive.

Like Zika virus, most women who contract cytomegalovirus (CMV) will not experience any symptoms and may not even know that they have been infected. Others may develop a mild illness, or may experience high fever, fatigue, joint pain, muscle pain and sore throat. Since these are also symptoms of other illnesses, most women do not even realize that they have been infected with CMV. 

Before women plan to become pregnant, it is recommended that they ask their doctors to have a blood sample drawn for CMV IgG and IgM antibody tests. If a woman has recently been exposed to a CMV infection, it is recommended that she wait 6 to 12 months before trying to conceive to minimize the risk of CMV transmission to her unborn baby.

If you have experienced any symptoms during your pregnancy similar to a seasonal illness, you can ask your doctor to add these CMV IgM and IgG antibody tests to your routine labs. These additional labs are relatively inexpensive and are covered by most insurance plans.

For more information about CMV screening and how to keep your baby safe during pregnancy, visit 

Zika and CMV conception recommendations infographic -  
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