What is CMV?

August 17, 2019

Cytomegalovirus, commonly called CMV, is a member of the herpes virus family that includes chicken pox, cold sores, and infectious mononucleosis (mono).

The virus is carried by people and is not associated with food, water or animals. Most individuals are exposed to CMV in childhood and have a mild infection similar to a typical cold, while the immune system develops antibodies to fight the infection. The virus remains alive, but becomes dormant, or hides, inside certain cells for the rest of the person’s lifetime.

Approximately 50-85% of American adults will test CMV positive, confirming exposure. 

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