Toxoplasmosis is an infection by the parasite Toxoplasma gondii. Once you have had it, you cannot get it
again. This is because your body has learned how to fight it off (immunity).
People usually become infected by eating food that contains the
parasite (such as undercooked meat from an infected animal) or by handling an
infected cat's feces or touching surfaces contaminated by them.
Many women have had toxoplasmosis (usually without any symptoms)
before they become pregnant. If a woman becomes infected during pregnancy, her
fetus may also get it. This can lead to eye and brain damage.
Avoiding contact with Toxoplasma gondii is key
to preventing fetal infection during pregnancy. If you are not immune to
Toxoplasma gondii or don't know whether you are immune,
you can drastically reduce your risk of infection if you:
If you have lab results that confirm your immunity to Toxoplasma gondii, you do not have to take special preventive
measures during pregnancy. For more information, see Toxoplasmosis Test.
July 23, 2012
Sarah Marshall, MD - Family Medicine
& Kirtly Jones, MD - Obstetrics and Gynecology
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