*A heartbroken West Des Moines (Iowa) mother is warning others against allowing people to touch your baby. We all know how hard this is — to say “please don’t touch my baby” because people see this adorable little one, and they want to hold her, kiss him, or play with their tiny little hands. But such moves can prove fatal for infants whose immune systems have yet to develop. This is what happened to one little girl, according to what her mother, Nicole Sifrit, shared with CNN affiliate WQAD. Shane and Nicole Sifrit, the proud new parents of a week old infant named Mariana, took the baby to a wedding and soon after noticed she stopped eating and wouldn’t wake up.
“Within two hours she had quit breathing and all of her organs just started to fail,” Sifrit told WQAD.
Omg. This is an absolute nightmare for any family with a new baby! Reports state the family left the wedding early to take Mariana to a children’s hospital, and it was there that they learned the little girl had contracted meningitis HSV-1 — a virus that can be caused by herpes.
Doctors told the Sifrits that Mariana likely contracted it by being kissed by someone who had a cold sore, though the person may not have had an open sore visible.
“They touch her, and then she touches her mouth with her hand,” Sifrits explained to WQAD.
According to the report, approximately 70% of all adults in the U.S. have the herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1), the type that is most often associated with oral cold sore outbreaks. Though it’s rare, babies can contract the virus from coming into contact with someone who has cold sores. While these outbreaks aren’t so dangerous for adults, the consequences can be severe for babies whose immune systems have yet to develop. For them, the virus can even spread to the liver, lungs, and brain.
“I always thought this stuff happens and it’s a shame and never thought it would happen to me,” Nicole told us last week, “I was not prepared at all. Keep your babies isolated. Don’t let just anyone come visit them. Make sure they are constantly washing their hands. Don’t let people kiss your baby and make sure they ask before they pick up your baby.”
Fundraising contributions for unexpected medical expenses can be sent to an online website available here: https://www.gofundme.com/53bkun-help-baby-mariana
Our hearts very much go out to the Sifrit family. The heartbroken mom placed this message on her Facebook page; where it garnered 1.4k responses and 310 shares as of this writing.
It’s just not fair. Not fair at all. Rest in sweet peace, dear little Mariana. Sending kisses to you and prayers for strength to your loving family.