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36 weeks amd suddenly paranoid about toxoplasmosis

(8 Posts)
El1995 Mon 12-Mar-18 11:17:02

Hey all! So basically I visited a friend that lives on a farm yesterday and was casually chatting about taking my niece there to see and feed the lambs at some point etc. Anyway as I was leaving she piped up that it wouldn't be a good idea as lambs and sheep can spread toxoplasmosis. (which I didn't realise). So basically during my pregnancy I've visited the farm 3-4 times and thought nothing of it, but now I'm totally paranoid that maybe I've got toxoplasmosis from my previous times of visiting, despite the fact I haven't touched any lambs. I stroked a few sheep but that was Before lambing season, I also stroked a pregnant goat last time I went???!!! Am I being silly or is it too late to bring this up to my midwife for anything to get done?I've been scrolling through Google which was obviously a big mistake 🙄🙄 did anyone else visit farms in pregnancy? I did wash my hands but on one occasion I don't think it was until I got home... Panicking now 😣😣

Panda368 Mon 12-Mar-18 11:42:20

I'd try not to worry too much. The majority of people have already been exposed to toxoplasmosis before they get pregnant and so already carry immunity - which if you have been around pets/ farms/ done gardening etc before falling pregnant is quite likely.

If you are still uncertain you can get a blood test to see if you already carry immunity to it. About 1 in 200 people are exposed for the first time in pregnancy and often this doesn't spread to the foetus. It's estimated that only 1 in 10,000 to 30,000 babies born suffer from congenital toxoplasmosis.

You're more at risk of being exposed to it from eating undercooked or rare meat than from petting animals too - thats why kittens/lambs are more risky because they wont already have had it and therefore carry the active infection in their poo.

MumInBrussels Tue 13-Mar-18 10:32:56

Try not to panic (I'm a worrier myself, so I know it's often easier said than done!)

They're paranoid about toxoplasmosis here in Belgium, so I get regular blood tests to see if I've caught it, since I'm not already immune. (They test at the beginning of pregnancy here, to check.) I asked my doctor about going to a farm, since we were due to go to one, and he said that as long as I wasn't playing with newborn lambs or actually helping sheep give birth, I'd be fine. The things they are really worried about here are meat that is not cooked all the way through, and fruit/veg that hasn't been thoroughly washed and/or cooked. Which has meant several months now of me being desperate for steak and burgers, since they're usually cooked medium at best, with several weeks to go before I can have one. (I'd rather not take the risk for a few minutes of fabulousness, even if I know the risk is low - I just know I'd worry too much afterwards...)

If you're worried you've been exposed to the virus, I think you can ask for a blood test in the UK to check. But please try not to worry about it - from what you've said it seems unlikely to be a problem.

Izzy24 Tue 13-Mar-18 10:36:19

You can ask your midwife to get your serology booking blood screened to see whether you were already immune at that time - which, as Pp said, is quite likely.

El1995 Tue 13-Mar-18 11:11:23

Yeah I think I'm just a worrier myself! Chances are I've already been exposed as I worked on a farm for 2 years and through lambing season aswell. Think I'd have been blissfully happy had my friends not said anything! But you know what Googles like, full of horror stories that made me completely freak out! 🚨 I don't know if it'd be too late now as I'm already 36 weeks along....everything has been normal so far (last scan was at 29weeks and they said everything was good). I have a midwife appointment this afternoon so will mention it to her, having a bit of a meltdown!

Izzy24 Tue 13-Mar-18 17:12:30

How did you get on at your appointment this afternoon?

Hope your midwife was able to reassure you?

El1995 Tue 13-Mar-18 17:50:29

Hey there! Yes went to my appointment this afternoon and my midwife said apparently it's mainly sheep and the chances are so so slim. She didn't seem overly concerned about it and told me to relax. I expect I'm working myself up over nothing!

Scrowy Tue 13-Mar-18 18:10:14

It's not actually 'the majority' that are immune, I understand people always say that on these threads to be reassuring but I've lived on sheep farms my entire life and lambed sheep during a toxoplasmosis epidemic and I still don't have immunity. Most farming women I know get tested when they get pregnant and most don't have immunity.

Of course the other side to that is that if it was that easy to catch then then I and all of those other women should by rights have caught it already. We haven't.

People who have had it are more likely to get it from eating undercooked meat or unwashed veg than marauding lambing sheep.

Toxoplasmosis passed on to the baby at 36 weeks would probably still have relatively good outcomes on balance.

Try not to worry too much

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