Awareness of congenital cytomegalovirus and acceptance of maternal and newborn screening

Katie J. Tastad, Mark R. Schleiss, Sara M. Lammert, Nicole E. Basta

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


Objectives To assess awareness of cytomegalovirus (CMV); attitudes towards screening; and frequency of behaviors that could increase the risk of prenatal infection. Methods We conducted a survey among 726 women at the 2017 Minnesota State Fair. Minnesota residents aged 18–44 were eligible if they had never been pregnant or had been pregnant within the past 10 years. We compared responses between never-pregnant and recently-pregnant women. Results Only 20% of study participants had previously heard of CMV. Remarkably, recently-pregnant women were no more likely to be aware of CMV than never-pregnant women after adjusting for potential confounders. After receiving information about CMV, nearly all participants indicated they believed prenatal (96%) or newborn (96%) screening should be offered. Conclusions Although baseline awareness of CMV was low (even among recently-pregnant women), after learning more about the risks, women supported screening. Several states have passed or proposed legislation promoting CMV education and/or screening programs. We identified important gaps in knowledge about CMV among women who may benefit from education about how to reduce their risk of exposure and who may need to decide whether they would be willing to screen for CMV in the future.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere0221725
JournalPloS one
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1 2019

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by a Community Health Impact in Pediatrics grant (awarded to MS) funded by the Minnesota Vikings Children’s Fund Award, “If You Don’t Pass, Screen” and the University of Minnesota Medical School Department of Pediatrics. The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript. We thank our data collection volunteers Joanne Dehnbostel, Melanie Firestone, Emily Groene, Audrey Hanson, Howie Hsieh, Julia Lang, Tessa Lasswell, Zach Laughlin, Heather Oas, Kara Ulmen, and Rachel Wirthlin; D2D facility manager Pat McKee, and our study participants who spent time with us at the Minnesota State Fair.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019 Tastad et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.


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