What was supposed to be the happiest week of their lives took a turn for the worse when a couple’s newborn baby died after contracting herpes.
Iowa couple, Shane and Nicole Sifrit, were looking forward to the first week of July. Nicole had given birth on July 1st to their first child together, Mariana. On July 7th, the Sifrit’s exchanged their vows. However, two hours after saying “I do,” the newlyweds left their wedding and rushed the newborn to Blank Children’s Hospital in Des Moines after noticing something wasn’t right.
Shortly after arriving at the hospital, the couple learned that their daughter had contracted Meningitis HSV1. The life-threatening virus is carried by someone with the cold sore virus, but not necessarily with an open wound. Moreover, doctors believe the newborn contracted the virus through a kiss.
Both Shane and Nicole tested negative for the virus. The negative results raised the belief that Mariana contracted the virus from someone carrying herpes, but not necessarily showing symptoms.
Shane told WHOTV shortly after being admitted into the NICU, Mariana’s condition went downhill. The six-day-old newborn stopped breathing as her organs started to fail. On Monday morning, Mariana was life-flighted to Iowa City to the University of Iowa Hospital.
Mariana lost her fight against the virus and passed away in her father’s arms Tuesday morning.
In an interview, Shane said:
“I always thought this stuff happens and it’s a shame and never thought it would happen to me. I was not prepared at all.”
Nicole then added:
“Keep your babies isolated. Don’t let just anyone come visit them. Make sure they are constantly washing their hands. Don’t let people kiss your baby and make sure they ask before they pick up your baby.”
Nicole also took to her Facebook page and wrote:
“She is now no longer suffering and is with the Lord,’In her 18 days of life she made a huge impact on the world and we hope with Mariana’s Story we save numerous newborns life. R.I.P. sweet angel.”
Meningitis may be caused by bacteria, fungi, or other types of germs. But many are caused by viruses. Most are caused by herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV1), the virus that also causes cold sores.
This virus can be spread by sexual contact or from an infected mother to her baby during childbirth. HSV1 infection can also be sexually transmitted to the genital area.
These viruses remain in the body throughout a person’s life, even when they’re not causing signs of infection.
Symptoms may include fever, light sensitivity, headache, and a stiff neck. If you have other symptoms, such as confusion, seizures, sleepiness, or a focal neurologic deficit — a nerve function problem that affects a specific area — these may suggest that your brain is also affected.
Source: Johns Hopkins Medicine
Nicole has three older children from a previous relationship. High school friend, Rachel O’Toole, told the Daily Mail with her older children, Sifrit did not let anyone outside their immediate family to interact with them while they were newborns. However, following the birth of Mariana, Nicole and Shane allowed visitors to visit them in the hospital.
Socialites, Here’s a look at Mariana’s life.
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