Despite terrible name, toxoplasmosis is a relatively mild disease. If only we are not talking about a pregnant woman. The combination of toxoplasmosis and pregnancy is extremely dangerous, because there is a huge risk of infection of the fetus. And it can lead to irreversible consequences ...
What is toxoplasmosis?
Toxoplasmosis (lat. Toxoplasmosis) - a disease caused by a parasite (Toxoplasma). Toxoplasma live in the intestines of dogs and other animal species, as well as in the ground, where the animals make natural urinating. So we can get the infection by changing the litter box, doing gardening, when we take into the mouth something dirty hands, or not eating roasted meat and poorly washed vegetables
Most often, toxoplasmosis is mild and does not manifest itself. Sometimes the symptoms are similar to common SARS. And in general, this infection can not be cured. Therefore, almost half of our population have ever been ill with toxoplasmosis, without even knowing it. After initial infection, the person has a life-long immunity, because blood produces a specific antibody.
There are times when toxoplasmosis becomes chronic. And chronic toxoplasmosis can be either acquired or congenital, if the disease is caught up with the baby still in the womb. For both cases, is characterized by:
- Low-grade fever
- Increased fatigue
- Decreased appetite
- The internal organs - enlarged liver, spleen, lymph nodes
- Also, in chronic toxoplasmosis may result in other organs and systems
In future moms toxoplasmosis is often overlooked, but can occur infection of the fetus. Although at an early stage of pregnancy the risk of transmission is rare, the consequences could be very serious (brain damage, severe eye damage, miscarriage). And in the middle and late pregnancy, the risk of fetal infection is higher but the effects are much less severe for the unborn child, because his immune system is more efficient.
Diagnosis of toxoplasmosis
Diagnosis of toxoplasmosis is needed in the case where the woman is in a "position" and, of course, when planning pregnancy. To do this, carry out serological screening of antibodies to Toxoplasma (immunoglobulins M and G).
And be seropositive in this case is much better than getting negative test results. After all, this means that the expectant mother and her child are protected from infection and its negative consequences. If the results are negative serology, a pregnant woman can recommend screened every month up to the birth.
The presence and amount of antibodies in the blood will tell the doctor how long ago was infected with toxoplasmosis (if it was). For example, the situation when the survey is not IgG, identified only as IgM, said during an acute illness. If on the contrary - it means, the disease is postponed for a long time and does not represent any danger for the woman. And if there are both types of immunoglobulins have to be tested again to investigate these credits over time. The more IgG in the blood, the smaller the time elapsed since the challenge.
High accuracy is also characterized by PCR (polymer chain reaction) with the study of the DNA molecule pregnant. But this kind of analysis only confirms or denies the presence of an infectious agent and does not give any idea of how long ago was infected.
You have discovered toxoplasmosis?
If you have found toxoplasmosis and pregnancy is still in the plans, consider yourself lucky. Of course, motherhood will have to wait a little bit, but your unborn child will be safe. And here is the problem if the infection occurred during pregnancy, will have to decide with the doctor, and urgently.
Unfortunately, if diagnosed toxoplasmosis during pregnancy in the early stages, an obstetrician-gynecologist will strongly insist that the woman had an abortion. You have every right to refuse abortion and receive appropriate treatment. But, alas, likely to carry and give birth to a healthy baby is very, very small.
Toxoplasmosis and pregnancy in the late stages doctors have a more favorable prognosis. First, the baby begins to develop its own immune system, and it somehow can resist infection. Secondly, starting from the second trimester, a pregnant already, you can assign a full treatment, which significantly reduces the risk of possible complications.
Chronic toxoplasmosis and pregnancy do not cause particular concerns of doctors. In this case the pathogens (infectious agents) does not circulate in the maternal blood, and accordingly, no risk of penetration through the placenta.
How is toxoplasmosis?
First of all, doctors are treated with so-called etiotropic drugs (antibiotics): Rovamycinum (spiramycin), tindurin, sulfonamides. As a rule, it is necessary to conduct two courses of medication, 5 days a week break in between. Before reappointment drugs from toxoplasmosis, your doctor may prescribe preventive pregnant folic acid.
After the birth, the child of an infected mother is also necessary treatment is indicated. Throughout the first year of life the baby will prescribe pyrimethamine, spiramycin, sulfadiazine and folic acid.
The dangerous intrauterine infection toxoplasmosis?
Before making a tough decision about a possible abortion, the woman should remember that it may take more research on the subject of fetal infection with toxoplasmosis. These studies include: Ultrasound diagnosis, amniotsentoz and umbilical cord puncture.
Immediately after birth, the baby whose mother was infected at the time of pregnancy, should also be thoroughly examined. Particular attention should be paid to consulting neurologist and ophthalmologist. Studies show that about ¼ of all cases of intrauterine infection of the child occurs damage the retina. As a result, the child will not be able to have a complete vision. This is not necessarily that the disease will manifest itself immediately after the birth of the baby.
Eye involvement and relapses may occur at any time during the life of the new man. In addition, during the first year, babies have regularly serological screening.
How to protect yourself from toxoplasmosis?
If you during pregnancy handed over analyzes on toxoplasmosis, and it is negative, it is just right to reflect on how, and in the next 9 months to protect yourself from this infection. In fact, it is not so difficult. It is enough to observe some simple rules of hygiene. Wash hands thoroughly before eating, to eat meat and fish, passed a quality heat treatment. Wash fruits and vegetables with soap, and even a brush (or sponge), even if you plan to cut them to peel (this also applies to citrus, bananas, melons, and watermelons).
Get rid of the cats?
Many ladies (and their mothers, grandmothers and caring husbands) are trying to get rid of the pet soon after the news of the "interesting" position. The reasons for this are three: the risk of allergies in children, the fear of competition from a cat / cat with a baby and the risk of toxoplasmosis.
In fact, the part with the beloved Fluffy not necessarily. Especially if you live more than 5 years - studies show that almost all the owners of these pets are immune to toxoplasmosis. But to follow safety rules still need: the cat paw wash after going to the street and into the toilet, wash their hands after contact with a pet, do not allow the animal to jump on the bed baby.
It is believed that you can get infected with toxoplasmosis and through open wounds. For example, if you scratched sick cat. But most doctors say that the risk is minimal - you can pick up toxoplasmosis from cat feces only.
Toxoplasmosis and Pregnancy - not a reason to panic, because strong emotions are contraindicated expectant mothers. But to treat this disease lightly, too, not worth it. Try to find a "middle ground" and listen to your doctor.