Toxoplasmosis, a disease caused by the parasite Toxoplasma gondii, is a worldwide health problem. Infection of a pregnant woman can result in severe fetal morbidity and even death. Moreover, there is increasing awareness that congenital toxoplasmosis can cause blindness, epilepsy and other abnormalities in children and adults. Congenital toxoplasmosis can only be prevented by giving information on how to avoid the infection during pregnancy or by routine serologic screening of pregnant women to identify a recent toxoplasma infection that would allow a timely decision for antibiotic treatment and prenatal diagnosis. Advice to pregnant women to apply hygienic measures during pregnancy can reduce with 63% the toxoplasma infection rate during pregnancy and should therefore become standard obstetrical care. Adequate serological screening for toxoplasmosis is possible and allows selection of patients at high risk for delivering a congenitally infected child. Prenatal diagnosis is accurate in diagnosing correctly infected fetuses around the 20th week of gestation. Whether or not serologic screening for toxoplasmosis should be combined with primary prevention will depend on the incidence of congenital toxoplasmosis in a given geographic area.
|Number of pages||7|
|Journal||Scand J Infect Dis|
|Publication status||Published - 1992|
- congenital toxoplasmosis