Lost my newborn to HSV Type 1

In March 2017 i found out I was pregnant. I had a great pregnancy, took care of myself, only gained 23lbs. Everything went really well.

On 12/17/17, at 39wks 3 days, I had my little baby girl Mallory. She was healthy, 8lbs, 21” long, Apgar score of 9.

We brought her home 2 days later on 12/19/17. We had limited visitors only a few family & a friend.

On 12/23/17 around 10:45pm I noticed her back & chest were really hot. I took her temperature across her forehead it registered around 99. I put a thermometer under her armpit & it was higher than 102.0. I started to freak out, I left a message for her pediatricians after hours line, we decided to go straight to the ER. They checked her out & immediately started running tests on our 6 day old. She had a spinal tap done for meningitis. An iv put in her arm. Her veins were so little they had trouble finding them. Mallory was a trooper through it all.

She was admitted to the hospital xmas eve 12/24. We then spent 6 days in the pediatrics unit where my baby was observed, poked many times for blood draws, had collapsed veins, was on oxygen. She developed a rash, 4 spots- 1 on her chin, 1 on her neck, 1 on her chest, & 1 on her back. They believed it to be herpes. They had to swab/scrape her neck to test it. She was diagnosed with HSV type 1 also known as the “cold sore virus”. She was immediately placed on acyclovir. It’s a 21 Day medicine in which hopefully at the end of the treatment your baby will survive. They needed more blood for more tests so they tried for the vein in her head, they got some blood but she started having issues clotting. Her head bled for 6hrs. She was transferred to the PICU where they held pressure on her head and got her stable. Her belly also started to extend outward & looked bloated. My poor baby girl was now having liver issues. She spent less than a day in the PICU.

We were then transferred to Phx Childrens Hospital on 12/31. We went there with the hope she would be okay & helped by liver specialist. When we got there we learned from a doctor that we probably would not be leaving with our baby. We worked with a great liver specialist who had a team of doctors on Mallory’s case. They ran test after test, X-rays, ultrasounds. They were giving Mallory plasma & blood parts as she still wasn’t clotting on her own. At one point all her symptoms pointed to neonatal hemochromatosis. We proceeded with that which involved a cleansing of her blood (kind of like dialysis). Unfortunately the next day we found that the procedure didn’t help & that HSV type 1 was the only culprit. There were more than 10 million copies of it found in just one sample of blood under a Microscope. This made her not a candidate for a liver transplant. Her kidneys began to fail as well & were only operating at 30% which was a sign that the HSV medicine was not going to work as she had to be peeing/pooping in order for them to know it was helping which she wasn’t. Her fate was sealed at this point. She was taken off all meds, blood, and we went to hospice care on 1/2/18. She was wire, meds, & iv free. They kept her comfortable & we spent quality time with her in bed, holding her, reading her books, & loving our sweet newborn baby.

On 1/4/18, at 1:05pm, our 18 day old baby, Mallory, took her last breath in her dads arms, opened her eyes to see us one last time, & I held her until her heart stopped beating.

I want people to be aware of this deadly virus HSV. Do not let people kiss your baby or get too close to them. Make sure people wash their hands. They do not warn you of this in classes, at your ob office, or when you leave the hospital & they should! HSV is herpes. HSV type 1 is also known as the “cold sore virus”. If someone with it is about to have an outbreak or has an outbreak they are contagious. They could even be shedding the virus apparently. If they get to close to the baby the virus can get on their skin, be inhaled through their nose, or by the baby’s hands. It’s sad to say but our baby is gone due to being cuddled/loved on by a family member.

It has been 2wks since Mallory left us. We miss & loved her so much!

3 Replies

  • Hello and Welcome. I am so very very sorry for the loss of Mallory. Thank you for sharing this story and helping to raise awareness regarding the importance of cleanliness and keeping little ones safe from germs. Its something most people would never think of til it happened to them. I so very much wish this had not happened to you. Please know we are here for you and you all are not alone.
    Love and Hugs
  • I am sending you many hugs after reading your story. I am so sorry your baby had to go through all that and wasn't able to recover. Nicki
  • Welcome to Share. I am so deeply sorry to read about the loss of your sweet baby girl Mallory. My heart is breaking for you both as I read your story. You're right! This is something that all expecting moms should have information on. Where are these posters in the doctors' offices? Your angel and story will help bring more awareness to this, but I am just so sorry she is not here with you. I am wishing you both continued strength and love as you navigate your journey through grief.

    More hugs,