HSV can cause a baby to have meningitis, brain damage and cerebral palsy

Severe illness (such as meningitis) during the first years of life, physical trauma, and severe dehydration can cause brain injury and result in CP. Congenital cerebral palsy results from brain injury during a baby’s development in the womb. These include rubella (German measles), cytomegalovirus (a herpes-type virus), and toxoplasmosis (an infection caused by a parasite that can be carried in cat feces or inadequately cooked meat). Neonatal sepsis and meningitis can cause cerebral palsy and birth injury. Sepsis can cause brain damage by directly infecting the central nervous system, indirectly causing inflammation in the brain (encephalitis), or causing a severe drop in blood flow to the brain (septic shock). If your child suffered a birth injury such as cerebral palsy from neonatal sepsis, meningitis, or another infection, you and your child may have grounds for a medical malpractice claim. The most common causes of neonatal meningitis is bacterial infection of the blood, known as bacteremia (specifically Group B Streptococci (GBS; Streptococcus agalactiae), Escherichia coli, and Listeria monocytogenes). Delayed treatment of neonatal meningitis may cause include cerebral palsy, blindness, deafness, and learning deficiencies.

HSV can cause a baby to have meningitis, brain damage and cerebral palsy 2In the UK, the most common virus to cause encephalitis is herpes simplex virus. Also, after encephalitis, some people are left with permanent brain damage. Sometimes you can have both encephalitis and meningitis at the same time. This is called meningoencephalitis. Babies with encephalitis can be off their feeds and appear irritable and/or drowsy. Get information, facts, and pictures about cerebral palsy at Encyclopedia.com. Meningitis is most often caused by a bacterial or viral infection. The disease can cause stroke, hearing loss, and permanent brain damage. Each year in the United States about 2,600 people get this highly contagious disease. Symptoms are noticed 7-10 days following the bite (most people do not notice tick bites) and may include headache, fever, nausea, confusion, partial paralysis,coma, and seizures.

Injury to the cerebellum can result in this type of cerebral palsy. This could have happened because of an infection, such as meningitis, a head injury, a drowning accident, or poisoning. Encephalitis is a rare brain inflammation caused by a virus. The best way to avoid encephalitis is to prevent the illnesses that may lead to it. It’s harder to detect some of these symptoms in infants, but important signs to look for include:. Note: Clicking these links will take you to a site outside of KidsHealth’s control. Pregnant women who have Rh negative blood type can be treated to prevent problems with blood incompatibility with their infant while in the womb. Maternal herpes infection can also result in infection in the infant, which in some cases results in brain infection causing brain injury related CP. Since anything that causes brain injury can result in CP, insuring optimal safety for infants is important in prevention.


Most new cases of genital herpes infection do not cause symptoms, and many people infected with HSV-2 are unaware that they have genital herpes. They include sunlight, wind, fever, physical injury, surgery, menstruation, suppression of the immune system, and emotional stress. Infants may get congenital herpes from a mother with an active herpes infection at the time of birth. Neonatal herpes can spread to the brain and central nervous system, causing encephalitis and meningitis and can lead to intellectual disability, cerebral palsy, and death. The most common agents causing aseptic meningitis are enteroviruses. In babies (and with some viruses in adults also) there is often severe involvement of other organs. Survivors may have Korsakoff’s amnesia, because of bilateral damage of the hippocampus, dementia, and seizures. You must get treatment immediately, because meningitis can cause death. The symptoms and signs of meningitis in babies and young children include:fever. One in five children are left with permanent disabilities, such as cerebral palsy and deafness. Viral encephalitis Viral encephalitis is inflammation of the brain caused by a virus and can cause permanent brain damage. The brain damage that causes CP can occur before the child is born, during birth or in the first few years of life. Children who have meningitis or viral encephalitis can also lead to CP. Undiagnosed infections in infants can lead to devastating consequences. Meyers Evans & Associates is dedicated to helping families whose lives have been ruined by medical negligence. Some common neonatal bacterial infections include septicemia, meningitis, syphilis, pneumonia, tuberculosis, or urinary tract infections (UTI). It is important to treat the infection immediately, because many of these infections can be extremely harmful to newborns; for example, HSV encephalitis can result in brain damage and possibly death if left untreated for too long (Caserta, 2013b). Cerebral edema may at times be severe and may lead to transtentorial or foramen magnum herniation and death early in the course of meningitis. In infants, increased intracranial pressure and continued fever may result from a subdural effusion. Following recovery from purulent meningitis, residual brain damage may be evidenced by cranial nerve palsies, mental retardation, or seizures.

What Is Cerebral Palsy? What Causes Cerebral Palsy?

That’s closely related to HSV-2, which causes genital herpes. Cold sores are typically spread by close contact such as kissing, sharing utensils, or sharing a towel with a person who has the virus. It can spread to the baby’s brain, causing brain damage such as meningitis or cerebral palsy. In severe cases, HPV-1 can be fatal to newborns. Remember that you don’t have to have an active cold sore to be contagious. Finally, HSV-1 may be transmitted through the mother’s breast milk if the mother is infected. While many people with rubella have few or no symptoms, symptoms can include:. If the fetus survives since 20 of these pregnancies end in miscarriage, the baby may be born with congenital rubella syndrome (CRS) which puts them at risk for growth and/or mental retardation, defects of the heart and eyes, deafness, liver and spleen damage, and bone marrow problems. Babies born with CRS can carry the virus a few months after birth, and are thus, a potential source of infection for other infants or pregnant women. It is possible for a fetus to become infected with HSV which can cause abnormalities. What these disorders have in common is that the underlying brain damage doesn’t get worse over the years. The number of new cases of cerebral palsy has actually risen slightly in recent years, partly because better intensive care is keeping more premature babies alive but also because fertility treatments have led to a rise in twin and multiple births, which are more likely to result in a baby with cerebral palsy. A brain injury resulting from a brain infection (e.g., meningitis, encephalitis) or from a fall or accident is termed acquired cerebral palsy. Maternal or fetal infections can damage the white matter in the brain, which causes nerve transmission problems between the brain and the body. Some people with CP may have difficulty walking and sitting. The brain damage usually occurs before birth, but it can also happen during birth or the first years of life.

Those with CP may have only minor difficulty with fine motor skills, such as grasping and manipulating items with their hands. Rubella, Cytomegalovirus, and Herpes) test before or during pregnancy. Serious infections that affect the brain directly, such as meningitis and encephalitis, may cause irreversible damage to the brain, leading to CP. Physical trauma to an infant or child resulting in brain injury, such as from abuse, accidents, or near drowning/suffocation, might cause CP. Genital herpes can be caused by either HSV-2 or HSV-1. Babies born to mothers infected with genital herpes are treated with the antiviral drug acyclovir, which can help suppress the virus. Most people either have no symptoms or do not recognize them when they appear. It also can lead to intellectual disability, cerebral palsy, and death. Herpes Encephalitis and Meningitis. If a baby is experiencing symptoms of sepsis, most physicians will take blood cultures, including a complete blood count (CBC) and a culture of the CSF. How can Sepsis and Meningitis Cause Cerebral Palsy? The mechanism of infection and damage is also different amongst the infectious agents, leading to more specific imaging and pathologic appearances. Vasculitis of arteries and veins may lead to thrombosis and hemorrhagic infarction. In the infant, it causes neonatal sepsis and meningitis. Rubella and herpes are the infections most likely to have extensive cerebral cortical calcifications, while rubella and CMV lead to micrencephaly. Children with cerebral palsy may have an accompanying seizure disorder and may have some level of learning disability, vision, speech, hearing or language problems. This, in turn, leads to a form of jaundice in the baby and may cause brain damage. Cerebral palsy often follows infections of the brain, such as bacterial meningitis or viral encephalitis, or it may be the result of a head injury.