HIV And Pregnancy: A Brief History And Where We Are Today
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It appears as if the first reported case of HIV being transmitted from a mother to a child was in 1985 when a Hemophiliac (person with a blood clotting disorder) infected his wife, who passed the infection to the infant. Since this early report, millions of babies have been born infected, and millions have died. But the improvements over the decades have been dramatic!
How often is HIV transmitted from mother to baby and how does this happen? Can it be prevented?
It really depends on a number of factors but in general, if there is no medical intervention, somewhere between 20% and 30% of babies born to a mother with untreated HIV-infection will be infected. So, chances are that a mother will not infect her baby, but chances of 1 in 4 are not particularly good odds when dealing with a deadly infection.
In order to improve the odds, we have to know where infection occurs in gestation and birth. While some transmission can occur while the