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If the test demonstrates Ig M antibodies, or no antibodies but the clinical suspicion of infection is high, the pregnancy should be managed by an obstetrician with expertise in this area.Many cases are not detected until an ultrasound examination is performed and is noted to be abnormal.The consequences can be serious and include miscarriage, brain damage, blindness and death.The timing of the infection in pregnancy influences the risk of the baby acquiring the infection.The parasite may be found in raw and cured meat, raw eggs, unpasteurised milk and cat faeces.It can also be found in soil contaminated with cat faeces.The third landmark paper addressed the treatment of toxoplasma infection in pregnancy (3).
After performing a multivariate analysis they concluded that the rate of transmission from the mother to the baby was not affected by the administration of antibiotics.
Most of the advice on toxoplasma in pregnancy comes from a few landmark research papers.
It is worth looking at the findings from these papers to help guide pregnancy advice and management.
The aim of the study was to determine if prenatal antibiotic therapy could reduce the rate of mother to baby transmission of and reduce the risk of severe consequences in infected babies as measured when they were one year old.
The study followed 144 women and considered key factors such as the gestational age at which the infection was acquired, the administration of antibiotic therapy, duration of antibiotic therapy, and time lapse between infection and the start of antibiotic therapy.
The main method to prevent infection is through education on strategies to reduce the risk of becoming infected.