Development of the unborn child may get affected if a pregnant woman is affected with rubella or German measles. Read on to learn more about causes and symptoms of rubella and its effects on pregnant women.
Just in case you are wondering what German measles are and if it can affect your unborn child during pregnancy, rubella generally affects the lymph nodes and your skin. Even though Rubella (German measles) is mild in nature, it can cause serious harm to your unborn child in pregnancy. The mild illness that you may experience includes swollen glands, rashes and a sore throat. Chances of the virus attacking your baby increase particularly when you suffer from it in the initial phase of your pregnancy.
What are the Symptoms of Rubella?
The symptoms of rubella - malaise, slight fever, swollen glands, followed by a slight rash a day or two later - develop two or three weeks after exposure. These symptoms may be mild and sometimes unnoticeable. A blood test can confirm the diagnosis of rubella.
How Does Rubella Affect Pregnancy?
If you have contracted rubella in the first month of your pregnancy, your baby has a 35% chance of developing serious congenital malformation. As the pregnancy progresses, the risk decreases. By the third month, the risk is down to 10% to 15%, after which the risk is negligible.
The virus causing German measles is known to affect organs developing in your baby. Sometimes babies are born with birth defects or congenital rubella syndrome. Some of the complications that might arise in this case are as follows.
What You Should Do?
You must go for the blood tests that are offered to test rubella. Here is what you should know.
In most of the cases women are tested positive for antibodies that means that you have a strong immunity.
In case your test results come negative, you are at a greater risk of contracting rubella. In this case, you should stay away from people suffering from this.
Once you have delivered your baby, you must get yourself vaccinated to protect yourself from the measles in future pregnancies.
In case you come in contact with someone who has rubella in pregnancy, you must get your status checked.
If you had been immunized before, generally you will be protected and not need anything further.
However, you may be asked to get some blood tests done to confirm the test results.
If you think you have rubella in pregnancy and feel sick, you must get in touch with your doctor. Generally, most of the viruses are not harmful for your unborn child, but you need to get the final word from your doctor.
This is a safe vaccine that is given to pregnant women as well. Those with weak immune system are generally offered this vaccine.
Vaccination may cause mild pain, swelling, or redness in your arm or leg, where it has been applied. You need not worry much about this. You might also get mild rash or fever. Pain in your joints shall be better in few days.
However, if you are concerned about anything, do have a talk with your doctor.
These are some of the safety measures you need to be careful of when you are pregnant. Following the guidelines stated by your doctor shall ensure a happy and pregnancy for you.
What are the effects of rubella or German measles on the foetus? Is it safe to take MMR vaccine during pregnancy? How to prevent rubella or German measles during pregnancy? Discuss here.
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- The Indiaparenting Team