I am 16 weeks pregnant and I work in a healthcare setting with mentally retarded clients. Well today one of them was diagnosed with herpes zoster, a form of shingles. Well I have been exposed to this infection and was taken out of the grouphome I work at and placed in another one because of the risk to the baby. I am so scared because she has had this "rash" on the back of her left leg for about a week and we did not know that it had spread to her upper leg, hip, and butt. Well today when the doc examined her it was open oozing sores!! The really messed up thing is that there is no staff restroom so we usually use her RR!!! Do you think its possible that i picked up the infection from there? The DON said it is contagious and that I need to get with my obgyn, which i have, i just left a message for his nurse to call me back. And there is another pregnant woman with me but she is already 7 months pg, Im barely 4!! So far I dont have any symptoms but Im scared that maybe its just lying dormant and the baby will be exposed to it. Has anybody gone through this?!
I am so frustuated at this situation! Its so not fair
Jenae Elizabeth 4/4/06
When I was about 22 weeks my mom came down with Shingles after i had just spent the weekend with her. The doctor told her and my OB told me that as long as I have had a good case of Chicken Pox before and unless i was touching the sores directly then i was in the clear. I am now 31 weeks and everything is fine....
Last edited by FirstTimeMomma; 10-24-2005 at 02:58 PM.
thanks so much for your quick reply, your response made me feel a lot better, thank you I was wondering also if anyone knows if they can detect this in your blood? I will be asking my doc when he calls back but if anyone knows it will set my mind at ease.
Jenae Elizabeth 4/4/06
My step mother had them and I was only 6 weeks pregnant and freaked! They DO come from the chicken pox strand and if you have had chicken pos in the past, you have built up immunities to them. Freaked me out too though.
Just a bit of information, I had the chicken pox when I was about 4. I am now 24 and 3 years ago I had shingles, so be cautious. I dont know how they affect a pregnancy, but I do know they are very painful and that they are very contagious (even if you have had the chicken pox like me!)
I had chicken pox when I was about 20 years old and when I was 18 I got shingles is a 2-3 inch circles on my back next to my spine. Although the bumps and the area was a wicked color of black/blue/red, mine never became exposed sores. I noticed the spot and went to the dermatologist, they told me it was herpes zoster and unless you are older, something like 50 or 60 years old they do not treat you and it runs it's course. My myself it was no big deal. I would be concerned about sharing a toilet with someone who has oozing sores all over their backside though. I am also not sure what effects it has on pregnancy either.
I would definitely contact the doctor ASAP. I have heard shingles is very painful and last a long time. As the above poster said, sharing a toilet with someone who has oozing sores on their backside is cause for concern. I want to know why this place doesn't have a staff restroom. I think its absolutely disgraceful that the employees have to share with the patients! Look at the situation you are in now! It could easliy have been avoided had the establishment been more careful. Also, it is my understanding that people get shingles when they DID have chicken pox.
Thanks everyone for your responses! I got a call back from my docs office and they dont seem too concerned about it since I had chicken pox when I was little and they said that I most likely did not contract the infection. I have no symptoms at all but they said at the first sign to call or come in right away. They said it is usually no big deal because shingles is usually not harmful to the baby, not like the chicken pox anyway! I feel a WHOLE lot better after talking to them.
And roxy you are SO right about needing a seperate RR!! We have told them about it before and they keep saying "budget budget". Well tomorrow I am going to insist that they rethink their budget so situations like this can be avoided in the future. This was very irresponsible on their part. And I've never been more glad in my life that I have the habit at work to "hoover" over the toilet instead of actually sitting on it!LOL! And besides I dont have any openings in my skin on my butt or legs where an infection could get into. This was a HUGE stress on me today and Im glad that its pretty much worked itself out, But I will definately be calling my doc if ANY signs at all show up!
Thanks so much ladies!!
Jenae Elizabeth 4/4/06
I don't know what your opinion is on law advice, but I would definitely consider contacting an attorney or the labor board. I know, sounds drastic, but it could have been a bad situation had the infection been something more severe. The employees are being put at a health risk because of budget, I think that is pathetic.