Cytomegalovirus (CMV) Infection - Prevention

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Is it possible to prevent cytomegalovirus infection? Is there a CMV vaccine?

Because CMV is a common virus, it is not always possible to prevent infection. Pregnant women should avoid exposure to CMV to prevent congenital CMV infection. Steps to reduce the risk of CMV infection include the following:

  • Washing hands frequently for 15-20 seconds, especially when in contact with young children, changing diapers, and handling toys, or when exposed to oral secretions
  • Avoiding sharing food, drinks, and eating utensils with others
  • Avoiding contact with saliva when kissing a child
  • Cleaning toys, countertops, and surfaces that come into contact with a child's urine or saliva
  • Using condoms during sexual contact

There is no available vaccine for preventing congenital CMV infection or CMV disease in individuals with suppressed immune systems. However, researchers are studying experimental vaccines in humans. It may be a number of years before there is a Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved CMV vaccine.

Return to Cytomegalovirus (CMV)

See what others are saying

Comment from: slp, 75 or over Female (Patient) Published: January 12

I was a speech pathologist working with children who had poor hygiene. I assumed that I contracted CMV (cytomegalovirus) from a particular child who was a real mess. The school system agreed and I received my full salary during the several months I was unable to return to work. Around that time, the New England journal of medicine printed an article stating that women of child bearing age should not work in day care centers because of the prevalence of CMV.

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