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Fifth Disease / Slapped Cheek Syndrome - is exposure while pregnant a risk?

(12 Posts)
Elf1981 Sat 23-Apr-05 09:46:39

Hi, I don't know if anybody will be able to help me, I've misplaced my "What to Expect when You're Expecting" and need an answer to this!

On Wednesday and Thursday I went to see my goddaughter who is two. Cue lots of hugging etc as normal.

Yesterday we went up to the house and her mother told me she's just been diagnosed with slapped cheek syndrome. I was under the impression that it wasn't contagious, as she had been told the same by the doctor who diagnosed it. However, I promised I'd print off some information for her, and having just read through it, and it states that it is contagious until the rash appears, which is when I would have been in contact with my goddaughter.

I am 15 weeks pregnant and just wanted to see if anybody knew whether I should be concerned? I don't think I need to be, just want some reassurance.

Elf xxxx

Nemo1977 Sat 23-Apr-05 09:53:31

Hi im not sure but might be worth a call to nhs direct just for some info?

tiffini Sat 23-Apr-05 09:54:14

it says here pregnant women should avoid contact, but no more info

tiffini Sat 23-Apr-05 09:54:54


Peachyclair Sat 23-Apr-05 10:22:33

I know someone whose daughter had this, and NHS direct told her that she should get checked if she was in the first three months. Fingers crossed on that basis youre OK, but tell MW anyway

What to exoect... thats a good book isnt it? My absolute bible when I had first as covered the more ususual complications I had.

tamum Sat 23-Apr-05 11:07:43

I don't want to alarm you, but exposure in the second trimester is a risk. If you have already had an infection yourself in childhood (which may well be the case even if you didn't have any illness) then you will be immune and your baby will be fine. Your doctors should be able to check your immunity. This happened to me, and I wasn't immune, did get infected, and my baby was fine, but you do need to get checked. Good luck.

gingernut Sat 23-Apr-05 11:11:34

Hi Elf1981, see here for an information leaflet. You should see your doctor asap, as slapped cheek is a risk before 20 weeks. You can get a blood test to see if you are already immune (the results take quite a while to come back). If you're not, they can do a follow-up test to see if you have recently produced antibodies (which would indicate that you caught it from your goddaughter). If you did you might be offered extra scans to check for hydrops foetalis. Unfortunately exposure during pg is also linked to a higher miscarriage risk.

Sorry, don't mean to worry you but it is best to be checked. The risk is very small but it is there.

I was exposed when I was about 12 weeks pg last year. Everything turned out fine for me, but it was an anxious few weeks before I got the all-clear. Good luck.

Elf1981 Sat 23-Apr-05 17:06:18

Thanks for all the comments. I am very worried, obviously, and will be getting this checked out with my midwife. Already I've been exposed to chicken pox (luckily I had it when I was a child) but it just seems like since I got pregnant any child I know gets everything possible!

hoxtonchick Sat 23-Apr-05 17:13:26

i too was possibly exposed to slapped cheek earlier in my pregnancy (turned out ds had something else, but his bright red cheeks really freaked me out). both he & i had to have blood tests to see if either of us had it & whether i was immune or not. turned out i wasn't immune, but neither of us had been exposed. we had to wait ages for the results, not helped by the lab running the wrong test initially. this happened when i was 19 weeks pg. i was quite surprised by how seriously the gp took it, but pleased. apparently you are more than likely to be immune but it's certainly worth getting the blood test.

Pruni Sat 23-Apr-05 17:47:23

Message withdrawn

Marina Sat 23-Apr-05 19:38:55

Do please get your immunity checked Elf. The risk in second trimester is small statistically but does exist. We had this happen to us at week 19 and I too was relieved to have my consultant take my concerns seriously, and get my immunity checked. If you have been exposed, ask for extra scans to keep an eye on the baby, as the problems that could arise are treatable in utero. They are rare, but preventable with the right care.
Most UK born and reared mums are immune apparently but immunity-from-childhood rates vary hugely around the world.

hoxtonchick Sat 23-Apr-05 21:25:58

don't know pruni, one of those unspecified viruses.... possibly enterovirus? i still haven't quite worked out why he was subjected to a blood test when it was me that mattered!

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