Parvovirus B19 is a common infection in young children, and the majority of adults are seropositive. However, congenital parvovirus infection can cause significant morbidity and mortality. Nonimmune pregnant women can acquire parvovirus if exposed to respiratory droplets from infected individuals. If parvovirus reaches the fetus, it can cause significant anemia and, in severe cases, hydrops fetalis. Percutaneous umbilical cord sampling can be used to diagnose and, if necessary, transfuse infected fetuses. Treatment of congenital parvovirus is largely supportive; fetuses who have reached 32 weeks’ gestation or who have severe hydrops should be delivered to allow for aggressive care.
KeywordsAnemia Hydrops fetalis Parvovirus Red blood cells Reticulocytes
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