CONGENITAL INFECTIONS

            Congenital infections refer to maternally transmitted infections, which are most frequently caused by the group of TORCH pathogens, which include Toxoplasma, Others (Listeria, Treponema), Rubella, Cytomegalovirus, and Herpes simplex type 2. Nowadays, maybe another “H” should be added to emphasize the common occurrence of HIV in this subgroup of CNS infections. Congenital infections of the brain may produce diffuse, parenchymal inflammation with some unique characteristics, such as microcephaly, brain atrophy, hydrocephalus, neuronal migrational anomalies and cerebral calcifications. The degree of the destructive brain process and the resultant developmental abnormalities depend on the timing of the infection. The earlier in gestation the CNS involvement occurs, the more profound the brain destruction will be. In cases of congenital infections, where the prerequisite is involvement of the mother, even in a subclinical form, the causative agents may reach the fetus, either during the gestation via a hematogenous - transplacental route, or during the birth as the fetus passes through the infected birth canal. Endnote , Endnote

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