Pediatric Cytomegalovirus (CMV)

Pediatric Cytomegalovirus (CMV)



Pediatric cytomegalovirus (CMV) is a very common herpes virus, but can cause serious problems for newborns.


The CMV virus is spread from person to person by contact with infected saliva, semen, urine and vaginal fluid.


  • Congenital - passed along to the unborn baby during pregnancy
  • Perinatal - passed along to a newborn during delivery or through breastmilk


Congenital CMV

  • Broken blood vessels (under the skin)
  • Eye problems
  • Hearing loss
  • Small head
  • Enlarged liver and spleen
  • Jaundice

Most newborns do not have symptoms. 

Perinatal CMV

  • Abnormal blood test results
  • Enlarged liver and spleen
  • Pneumonitis (swelling of the lungs)

Symptoms are usually seen in very premature or sick newborns between 3 weeks - 6 months.

Test and Diagnosis

  • Amniotic fluid testing
  • Blood work (CBC, liver function)
  • CT
  • Eye exam
  • Hearing test
  • Saliva and urine cultures