The animated videos in NORD’s Rare Disease Video Library provide brief introductions to rare disease topics for patients, caregivers, students, professionals and the public. NORD collaborates with medical experts, patient organizations, videographers and Osmosis to develop the videos, which are made possible by individual donations, educational grants and corporate sponsorships. NORD is solely responsible for the content.
Cytomegalovirus infection (CMV) is a viral infection that rarely causes obvious illness. The virus that causes CMV is part of the herpes virus family and, like other herpes viruses, may become dormant for a period of time and then be reactivated. CMV affects young children mainly, but it is estimated that by age 30 in the United States, half of all adults are, or have been, infected. The virus can pass from an infected, pregnant mother to her child through the shared blood supply (umbilical cord).
Physicians recognize three clinical forms of CMV. These include: (1) CMV inclusion disease of the newborn, which ranges in severity from being without symptoms to being a severe disease affecting the liver, spleen and central nervous system, with possible developmental disabilities; (2) Acute acquired CMV infection, which is similar to infectious mononucleosis and characterized by fever, a feeling of being not quite right (malaise), skeletal-muscular pain and the absence of a sore throat; (3) CMV in immuno-compromised persons (for instance, people who have had organ transplants or who have HIV) with increased risk for difficult eye infections (CMV retinitis), gastrointestinal CMV, and encephalitis.