Causes and Diagnoses

Causes and Diagnoses of Cytomegalovirus Disease

The cytomegalovirus can spread easily among family members, especially when there are children in a household. The virus can be found in bodily fluids, including saliva, urine, tears, blood, semen and breast milk.

CMV is often spread through:

  • Sexual contact
  • Amniotic fluid, passing from mother to baby
  • Breastfeeding
  • Contact with saliva, urine or blood
  • Transplanted organs
  • Blood transfusions

Good hand-washing habits are essential for preventing the spread of CMV.

Diagnosing cytomegalovirus

A simple blood test can confirm a cytomegalovirus infection. Babies suspected of having congenital CMV may have their blood, urine or saliva checked within two to three weeks after birth.

In severe cases of CMV, other tests may be recommended to look for damage to vital organs.

Diagnostic Tests

Legal Information

By clicking on these websites, you are leaving the Northwestern Medicine website. These websites are independent resources. Northwestern Medicine does not operate or control the content of these websites. By visiting these websites, you agree to this third party’s terms of use for their website.