Is a woman's pregnancy at risk if she gets West Nile virus?
There is one documented case of transplacental (mother-to-child) transmission of WNV in humans. Although the newborn in this case was infected with WNV at birth and had severe medical problems, it is unknown whether the WNV infection itself caused these problems or whether they were coincidental. More research will be needed to improve our understanding of the relationship - if any - between WNV infection and adverse birth outcomes.


Nevertheless, pregnant women should take precautions to reduce their risk for WNV and other arboviral infections by avoiding mosquitoes, using protective clothing and repellents containing DEET. When WNV transmission is occurring in an area, pregnant women who become ill should see their health care provider. Those whose illness is consistent with acute WNV infection should undergo appropriate diagnostic testing.

Show All Answers

1. What is West Nile virus?
2. How is West Nile virus spread?
3. Are older adults more at risk for West Nile viral disease?
4. Where did West Nile virus come from?
5. Can you get West Nile virus directly from birds?
6. Besides mosquitoes, can you get West Nile virus directly from other insects or ticks?
7. What are the symptoms of West Nile viral infection?
8. Is a woman's pregnancy at risk if she gets West Nile virus?
9. How is West Nile encephalitis treated?
10. Is there a vaccine against West Nile virus?
11. How long does it take to get sick if bitten by an infected mosquito?
12. What should I do if I think I have West Nile encephalitis?
13. What can I do to reduce my risk of becoming infected with West Nile virus?
14. What can I do around my home to help reduce exposure to mosquitoes?
15. If I live in an area where birds or mosquitoes with West Nile virus have been reported, and I am bitten by a mosquito, am I likely to get sick?
16. I've gotten a mosquito bite. Should I be tested for West Nile virus?
17. Should I report dead birds to the Health Department?
18. If a dead bird is not going to be collected, how should it be disposed of?