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How can babies born form HIV positive mothers not being infected?
Mar 6, 2001

I would like to know how can the babies of HIV positive mothers not to get infected, as long as the baby "shares" mother's blood through placental circulation? Is HIV one of the "products" that do not cross the placental barrier?

Response from Dr. Sullivan

Only 1 in 4 babies born to untreated and non-breastfeeding HIV infected women will be infected with HIV; most HIV infected babies are infected when they are exposed to virus in the vagina during the birth process; some babies are infected while in the uterus mostly during the second and third trimesters; research has indicated that the strongest predictor of mother to child transmission of HIV is the amount of virus in the mothers blood; if a pregnant women has undetectable HIV RNA levels she will have a less than 1% chance of transmitting HIV to her infant. JLS.


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